President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday, asked those who have been criticising his administration, particularly the nation’s elite, to be fair in their criticism.
In criticising his government, Buhari said critics should first consider the state of the country he inherited in May 2015.
According to a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, the President made the call while receiving the Executive Secretary of the Nigeria Christian Pilgrims Commission, Rev. Yakubu Pam, at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
The statement was titled “Criticise us fairly, President Buhari appeals to Nigerian elite.”
Apart from the state of the country at the inception of his regime, Buhari also asked his critics to consider the resources available to the Federal Government under his watch while criticising him.
He said, “Those criticising the administration should be fair in terms of reflecting on where we were before we came, where we are now and what resources are available to us and what we have done with the limited resources.
“We had to struggle paying debts, investing in road repairs and rebuilding, to revamp the rail and try to get power.
“This is what I hope the elite when they want to criticise will use to compare notes.”
Buhari also gave his regime a pass mark on the security situation in the North East.
Although he admitted that there are still what he called “occasional Boko Haram problems,” the President said there was a lot of improvement when compared to the past experience of the residents of the affected states.
He added, “What was the situation when we came? Try and ask people from Borno or from Adamawa for that matter and Yobe. What was the condition before we came and what is the condition now?
“Still, there are problems in Borno and Yobe, there are occasional Boko Haram problems, but they know the difference because a lot of them moved out of their states and moved to Kaduna, Kano and here (in Abuja).
“We were not spared of the attacks at a time. The government is doing its best and I hope that eventually, our best will be good enough.”
Buhari also assured all stakeholders that the welfare of Internally Displaced Persons was paramount on the agenda of his regime.
“The people in IDP camps, the weak, aged, I feel sorry for the young because this is the time they are supposed to get education.
“We must not allow this time to pass because it will never be regained. So, we are really interested in what is happening there and we are doing our best,” the President said.
He commended the Executive Secretary on his appointment and activities on peace building around the country despite his short time in the saddle and assured him of the listening ear of the government whenever he had contributions to make.
Earlier in his remarks, Pam was said to have intimated the President with some of the activities of the commission since he was appointed in July 2020.
These include; organisation of Peace Summit on Southern Kaduna as well as peace-building efforts in Plateau, Benue, Taraba and Nasarawa States.
He added that the commission has proposed to host Christian religious leaders in a summit to help douse pressures within the polity, among other plans.