President Goodluck Jonathan promised Nigerians on Monday that he would not fail as President, but challenged the citizens to renew their hope and faith in the possibilities that lie ahead.
“Let me assure all Nigerians that we shall not fail,” Jonathan told Nigerians in a dawn broadcast to mark the nation’s 52nd Independence Anniversary.
The President added, “I am confident that Nigeria would continue to be a source of pride to its citizens, to Africa and the black race and to humanity. We have remained a strong nation. I bring to you today, the message of renewed hope and faith in the many possibilities that lie ahead.”
The anniversary was celebrated within the Presidential Villa amid tight security all around the Federal Capital Territory.
The President’s wife, Patience, was expectedly absent from the event witnessed by top government functionaries and friends of the administration. Patience is believed to be receiving treatment for an undisclosed disease at a German hospital though the Presidency has kept mum on the condition of the President’s wife.
Accredited participants at the event included a former Head of State, Gen. Yakubu Gown; Vice-President Namadi Sambo; former Vice-President Alex Ekwueme; President of the Senate, David Mark; Speaker, House of Representatives, Aminu Tambuwwal; and the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Mariam Mukhtar.
Others were ministers, service chiefs, presidential aides, members of the diplomatic corps, members of the National Assembly and selected captains of industry.
Jonathan appeared at the event in full military ceremonial dress of a Field Marshal.