…assures South West Muslim leaders of faster economic growth
By Oluwashina Iyanda
The Presidential Candidate of the All Progressives Congress, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, on Sunday, pledged to retool the economy for the benefit of all Nigerians.
Tinubu gave the assurance while speaking at a TownHall meeting with South West Muslim Leaders on Sunday in Ibadan.
The meeting was convened by the umbrella of the Muslim Ummah of South West Nigeria (MUSWEN),
It is in continuation of his engagements with religious groups and leaders in the country.
COMMENDATION FOR RELIGIOUS LEADERS
The APC standard bearer also commended religious leaders in the country for their continued prayers and sermons.
Such preaching, he said, had contributed to unity and peaceful coexistence.
He described the 2023 general elections as “Nigeria’s momentous encounter with destiny”.
The presidential candidate urged Islamic clerics to educate their followers on the importance of exercising their franchise.
He said that they should vote only for candidates with a track record of excellent public service.
“This election season has been a hybrid of facts and falsehood, truth and lies.
“I would like the election to be one based on facts and truth.
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“What is a candidate’s record of performance and what are his policies?
“I ask you to urge your followers to come out and vote and to do so wisely.
“Vote for a candidate that has a vision for a peaceful, prosperous Nigeria where tolerance and compassion undergird our constitutional and legal rights,” he said, partly speaking in Yoruba.
The presidential candidate assured Nigerians that he would be “a fair and just leader”.
“My pledge for fairness and justice is consistent with the tenets of the Islamic faith.
“A leader in a plural society like ours is enjoined to be a leader of all.
“If elected, I shall govern in an honest and democratic manner in harmony with our nation’s constitution.”
Referencing his stewardship as Lagos State governor, Tinubu promised to use that experience to lead Nigeria in the “same spirit of innovation and pragmatic vision.
On security, he vowed to end reigns of terror, kidnappings and other crimes by recruiting and training more security personnel.
These will be in addition to providing more security gadgets to effectively fight criminal elements.
Tinubu said he would diversify and restructure the nation’s economy towards achieving at least six per cent growth annually.
“These goals will be achieved through the reforms of our industrial policy, infrastructural enhancement, power sector innovation and significant budgetary reforms.
“Regarding the economy, we seek to repair the very structure of the economy.
“We can no longer flourish as an economy based on natural resource extraction.
“We must become a dynamic, diversified economy where those who want to work can find a good job.
“But let us also be a society sufficiently compassionate to help those who cannot help themselves.
“We must revive manufacturing and industrial growth so as to create jobs as well as produce the goods and services that improve the daily lives of the average person.
“We seek a minimum of six per cent growth annually through reform of our industrial policy, infrastructural enhancement, power sector innovation and significant budgetary reform,” Tinubu told the Muslim leaders.
In the agricultural sector, the APC flagbearer promised to guarantee food security through enhanced productivity.
He assured of improved farm incomes in order to ensure that no child goes to bed without food to eat.
“In the end, may no Nigerian parent send a child to bed hungry, despairing about what tomorrow might bring.
“Instead, let all of our children, regardless of their faith or creed, be able to lay their head down believing in a better tomorrow of hope renewed.”
Speaking earlier, MUSWEN President, Alhaji Rasaki Oladejo, said the event provided an opportunity for the APC candidate to interface with the Muslim leaders of South West on his plans for the nation if elected.
”This, is apt, particularly on how he could make Nigeria a land of opportunities where no man will be oppressed,” he said.
Also, the National Chief Missioner of Ansar-ur-Deen Movement, Sheikh Ahmad Abdulrahman, said the gathering was not to campaign or endorse Tinubu or any candidate.
”But to see whether Tinubu can deliver for the country as he did as governor of Lagos State,” Abdulrahman said.
Tinubu had earlier interfaced with Bishops from Pentecostal Churches in the 19 states of the North.
He also met with the leadership of the Christian Association of Nigeria.
At the interface meetings, Tinubu delivered a similar message as he did to the Muslim leaders of the South West.
He had told the Christian leaders that he would run an inclusive government that will be blind to ethnicity and religion.
His government, he said, would be fair and equitable to all Nigerians.
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