President Goodluck Jonathan, yesterday, reassured Nigerians that there was no going back on the ongoing privatisation of the power sector, and added that “the transformation has reached the point where everybody will be proud that reform has taken place.”
The presidential assurance was contained in the goodwill message he sent to the Catholic Bishops Conference of Nigeria (CBCN) at the opening ceremony of their second plenary session at Mater Dei Cathedral, Umuahia, Abia State.
The president, who reiterated his commitment to seeing that things were done in the right way, said that he was prepared “to pay any price” to ensure that things work well in Nigeria.
He also pledged to do his utmost to implement all his ongoing reforms in the critical sectors of the economy.
In the message delivered by the Minister of Labour and Productivity, Chief Emeka Wogu, he said that he was on course to pull the nation out of the present malaise.
He commended the bishops for inviting him to come and “share with them thoughts and vision that guide our nation in the search for development” noting that he was not unmindful of the enormous problems facing the nation, assuring that he has been confronting the challenges headlong.
The President cited the youth employment programmes to keep the youths out of crime, the ongoing power sector reforms as well as efforts to tackle the infrastructure deficit across the nation as some of the probems being tackled.
On the security challenges facing Nigeria and the rest of world today Mr. President called on the Catholic Bishops to continue in their prayers so that the nation can overcome the critical challenges threatening the peaceful co-existence of citizens, adding his administration was on its own committed to the building of an egalitarian society.
In his speech the president of CBCN and Catholic Bishop of Jos Diocese, Most Rev Ignatius Kaigama called for a lasting solution to the senseless killings of Christians and other innocent citizens in the northern parts of the country saying that patience was being overstretched..
He lamented the ease with which people acquire dangerous weapons both locally and foreign made and blamed it largely to the porosity of the nation’s land and sea borders.
“The explosive devices have become like toys used at will and local and sophisticated arms escape our sea ports, land borders and findtheir way into the hands of criminals and hoodlums; it is a cause of very greatconcern,” the CBCN President said.
However Bishop Kaigama assured that the Catholic Bishops and the faithful were committed to a united and peaceful Nigeria despite the blood lettings of Christians and would continue to pray for the men of violence to change their ways and learn to love.
He pointed out that the long term goal of the Boko Haram attacks on Christian was to cause sectarian violence and cause the disintegration of Nigeria but he sounded a clarion call saying, “We must collectively resist the attempt to pitch northern Nigeria against southern Nigeria, Christians against Muslims”.