President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday called on all Nigerians to remain hopeful despite the current socio-economic and security challenges confronting the country.
He made the call in his 2015 Christmas Message to Nigerians.
In the message he personally signed, President Buhari felicitated with all Nigerians, especially the Christian faithful, on the “joyous occasion” of this year’s Christmas.
“Let us also not allow current socio-economic and security challenges to dampen our expectations for a better Nigeria”, the president said.
He said while his government had taken a number of steps to restore hope to the citizens; the 2016 budget, presented to a joint session of the National Assembly on Tuesday, defined his commitment to giving Nigeria a new lease of life.
The president also said that his administration’s “change slogan is not a campaign gimmick but a promise that must be kept”.
Buhari stressed that his government was determined to bring about tangible changes in the lives of Nigerians.
He said in this regard, efforts would be intensified to recover stolen funds, block revenue leakages and enthrone due process, transparency and accountability.
According to the president, public office is a public trust that must be held to the highest ethical standards.
He, therefore, enjoined all Nigerians to re-dedicate themselves to the virtues of peace, love, honesty, justice, equity, piety, humility and service to others, which Jesus Christ taught.
“There can be no doubt that a greater manifestation of these virtues and ideals in our lives will immensely help us to become a more united, peaceful, secure and progressive nation”, Buhari said.
The president also asked Nigerians to reach out in love and compassion to fellow citizens in distress at this period of the nation’s history.
He particularly urged all Nigerians to remember victims of terrorism and insurgency in the country, especially Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs).
He said the Federal Government would continue to collaborate with state governments and other stakeholders to ease the harsh conditions in IDP camps, “while the ultimate objective remains to quickly put an end to insurgency and return the IDPs to their homes”.
Buhari also stated that “We must never again allow any group to hold the nation to ransom under whatever guise”.
While wishing all Nigerians a Merry Christmas, the president also appealed to them to “please drive carefully”.