The Action Democratic Party (ADP) has commenced its presidential campaign which it has tagged “ The New Direction” anchored on the promise to revamp the oil&gas sector, education, agriculture, health, tourism and other critical sectors of the Nigerian economy even as the party unveiled United States trained entrepreneur, Prince Martins Kunle Olateru-Olagbegi as the Vice Presidential candidate of the party.
The Presidential candidate of the party, Yusuf Yabagi Sani, made this known during a world press conference in Abuja on Wednesday, stressing that his decision to run for the Presidency is a response to a generational challenge to lift Nigeria from the monumental political, economic and social challenges confronting this generation of Nigerians and by extension, future generations.
He pointed out that over the years Nigeria’s records on the Human Development Index show Nigeria as “The country with the highest number of poor people in the world; the country with about 13.5 million children out of school – the highest in Africa; the Country with the third most serious humanitarian crisis after Syria and Yemen and one of the countries with lowest allocations to Education in their annual budgets against United Nations advice that every country allocates 26% of its annual budget to Education.”
He said further that Nigeria is “one of the countries with the lowest GDP growth rate in Africa; one of the countries with the highest population growth in the world; one of the most insecure or unsafe countries in the world; one of the countries high up on the corruption Perception Index globally, despite the claim of the current APC government of fighting corruption.”
Sani, who is also the National Chairman of the party, noted that Nigeria also has the unenviable record of being one of the countries with the lowest per capita incomes world-wide adding that while population is increasing, the GDP is decreasing, which is a serious sign of decline and under-development, caused by poor planning and ineffective governance.
“Our policy on oil and gas sector shall be geared towards domestication and accountability. My administration shall review the current policy on sales of crude oil and gas on Free On Board (FOB) to Cost Insurance and Freight; and also our Cabotage Law to stop the annual loss of estimated $16.2 recently reported by the National Chairman, National Fleet Implementation Committee (NFIC).
“Furthermore, our government shall make it mandatory for buyers of crude oil and gas from Nigeria to refine at least 30% of their allocation locally in order to stop the export of jobs to other nations at the expense of our teaming unemployed graduates and youth.
“My administration shall make it compulsory for the operators of our crude oil and gas export terminals to install an online monitoring system that shall enable relevant government agencies to have an unhindered access to information and data on actual quantities of exports and revenue accruable to the nation so as to institute culture of accountability and transparency,” he said.
He said the party will rebuild Nigeria’s moribund infrastructure base and power architecture to ease industrialization and the growth of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) adding that bureaucratic impediments to business shall be eliminated to enhance the inflow of Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) and check capital flight which remains a major threat to the Nigerian economy.
“Since education is central to development, ADP Government shall create a synergy between the Education sector and the economy. This will ensure that the products of our education system have the necessary skills required in the economy.
“A synergy between the education sector and the economy will help tackle unemployment by ensuring that unemployable people without skills are not churned out by our educational institutions. It will also ensure that skilled labour is produced. Our Universities will be given a new attention to enable them play their roles effectively as breeding grounds for the future leaders who will manage the affairs of our Country at the highest levels,” he said.
On the pervasive insecurity, especially the Boko Haram insurgency in the north east which is a major challenge to Nigeria’s overall national economic, social, and political aspirations, the National Chairman of the ADP, said his administration will never be found wanting in this regard.
He said a new orientation shall be encouraged in the military with the provision of state of the art hardware to stamp out insurgency and other forms of threats to Nigeria’s territorial sovereignty. “An ADP government will ensure that no inch of Nigeria’s territory is yielded or conceded to insurgents of whatsoever names called,” he said.
“As a patriot with focus, drive and uncommon commitment to national development, I am determined to change the narratives and be the CREDIBLE ALTERNATIVE our Country Men and Women are earnestly yearning for. Our agenda shall be anchored on the deployment of new governance models to restructure Nigeria and give our people a new direction,” he said.
He urged Nigerians to vote for the party promising that his government shall plan and sustain economic strategies for a private-sector driven economy with stronger regulatory agencies and institutions which will administer economic reforms in the overall interest of our people.
Innocent Odoh, Abuja