President Muhammadu Buhari has called on Nigerian elites to judge his administration’ s performance with fairness saying he has done more for the country with little resources than successive government.
The President was speaking at the closing of the first-year ministerial performance review retreat held in Abuja on Tuesday.
According to the president, the average production of oil in the country, from 1999 to 2014, was 2.1 million barrels per day sold at an average price of $100.
“When we came, it collapsed to $37, $38 per barrel, you know it. And the militants were unleashed on the administration, and the production went down to half a million barrels per day.
“I want you to please reflect, what was the condition of the infrastructure then, in spite of those earnings. The roads, the rail is dead and there was no power, up till now no power; where does the money go?”
“So, please encourage your friends, the elite, to reflect on what this administration has done, what APC has done and what we have achieved. Well I am doing my best, God has given me two chances.’’
While addressing the long-running conflict between cattle rearers and farmers,the President blamed past leaders for encroaching on cattle routes.
The President said when he met with the President of the United States, he was asked ‘why are you killing Christians?’
“I believe I was about the only African, among the less developed countries, the President of the United States invited, and when I was in his office alone with him, only God is my witness, he looked at me in the face and asked ‘why are you killing Christians?’
“I wonder, if you were the person, how you will react? I hope what I was feeling inside did not betray my emotion.
“So, I told him that the problem between the cattle herders and farmers I know is older than me, let alone him (Trump). I think I am a couple of years older than him.
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“With climate change and population growth and the culture of the cattle rearers, if you have 50 cows and they eat grass, any root to your water point, they will follow it, it doesn’t matter whose farm it was.
“The First Republic leadership is the most responsible set of leadership we’ve ever had,” he said.
“I asked the Minister of Agriculture to get a gazette of the early sixties, which delineated the cattle routes, the grazing areas.
So any cattle rearer that allows his cattle to go to somebody’s farm is arrested, taken before a court. The farmer is called to submit his bill. And if the cattle rearer cannot pay, his cattle are sold.
“But subsequent leaders encroached on the cattle routes, took over the cattle areas.”
So, I tried and explained to him, this has got nothing to do with ethnicity or religion. It is a cultural thing on which the respective leadership was failing the nation.