Former Vice President and chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Atiku Abubakar, the Abia state governor and the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) have declared 2017 a year of new hope for Nigeria and Nigerians.
In a statement released to mark the New Year celebrations, Alhaji Atiku, the Turakin Adamawa, described the outgone 2016 as a year in which our nation faced a multitude of challenges, but which ended on a high note, giving citizens hope and confidence in what they, as a nation, can achieve when they stand to work together.
“Our military has recorded an important victory over Boko Haram and we should be grateful for the sacrifice our men and women in uniform are prepared to make to keep us safe. To honor them, we should also remember that it is our collective responsibility to make peace, and not just in the North East.
“I believe we can and will work around our differences, because we know that our strength lies in our diversity. And when we make our New Year’s resolutions, I hope my countrymen and countrywomen will join me in aspiring to be tolerant and to listen with an open mind and heart to those who do not share our views. We should respect each other’s views and traditions, and we should remember that our humanity shows in how we treat the most vulnerable.”
The Turakin Adamawa also addressed the economic challenges Nigeria is facing.
“On the economic front, the federal government has given assurances of a speedy recovery. I am confident that we will see investments in key sectors, and that steps will be taken to restore business confidence. We’ve been dealt a cruel hand, but things are looking up, and I’m confident we will emerge stronger: we’re learning to be more efficient and effective, and we’re learning to evaluate what we really need and what we can afford. We’re suffering, but we’ll become more innovative and competitive.”
In the same vein, Abia state governor, Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu, has urged Abians to hold unto God’s unchanging hands, believing that year 2017 will be better than past years.
In his new year message to Abians, Ikpeazu said: “We remain grateful to God for His mercies and protections. It is not by our power that we have made it to 2017, it can only be God. Therefore, I urge us to keep holding into God’s unchanging hands.
“As Government, we are not yet in the land of Canaan. Therefore, we remain resolute in our efforts to continue in the infrastructural redevelopment of our state, as we shall embark on construction of more roads and bridges this year.
“Our agricultural revolution will take a more serious dimension this year, as we shall launch the community palm plantation in all our communities.
“You must have noticed a recent upsurge in the conversation around Made-In-Aba such that even President Muhammadu Buhari
gave personal assurances in his 2017 Budget Speech that attention will be paid to the manufacturing power-houses of Aba.
“This is the result of our sustained advocacy blitz to showcase the ingenuity of Aba Producers to the world and boost the GDP of Aba, which is today, the SME capital of Nigeria.
“Even more impactful is the fact that because of the sustained campaign, people are now proud to acknowledge that they are wearing or using Made-In-Aba products which has in-turn led others to pivot towards Aba for their goods and services.
“Made-In-Aba is a conversation that has taken National space and we encourage you to help sustain the conversation as you go back to your bases to help us take it global.”
“I urge Abians to resolve to be more united in this New Year. Let the interest of Abia override our individual interest. This is the only way we can arrive at the Abia of our dreams.”
The former Vice President concluded that hope was important to all we aim to achieve in 2017, as that hope and perseverance will guide us through the darkness that announces the break of dawn.
“Hope must be our starting point,” he said, adding “we must never stop aspiring for a better future and a better life for us and for future generations. We must persevere, changing the small things we can influence without losing sight of the bigger picture.”
The Turakin Adamawa expressed thanksgiving to God for seeing Nigeria through a tough year, noting that the rest of Nigeria’s journey could only be made possible with God’s help.
“All our hope, our confidence, continues to rest in God,” he said.
Also felicitating, the APC has felicitated with Nigerians for commitment and support to the Party in the past year and wish all a prosperous 2017.
The party in a statement signed by its National Publicity Secretary, Mallam Bolaji Abdullahi, on Friday thanks Nigerians for their support and commitment to the APC led Government in 2016.
The statement reads: “We understand that the past year has been a difficult one for Nigerians as Government laid the necessary foundation for setting our country on the path of sustainable growth. We are confident however that many of Government’s effort will begin to yield positive dividends this year as our country climbs out of the current economic recession.
“The APC continues to stand with the people of Nigeria and have confidence in the ability and commitment of President Muhammadu Buhari to provide the necessary leadership to set our economy and our country on the path of recovery and self-reliance.
“With the effective defeat of Boko Haram insurgents in the Northeast, we have achieved one of the major promises the Party made to Nigerians even as the Government continues to work on improving the safety of lives of Nigerians across the country.
“We appeal to Nigerians to be more patient and continue to support the APC-Government as we bring our country on the path of peace, progress and stability,” it added.