News / Africa

New Nigerian Cabinet Faces High Expectations

Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan (file photo)
Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan (file photo)

Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan says his new Cabinet is facing high expectations from Nigerians who want a stronger economy and better security.  

President Jonathan says his new Cabinet must rethink the way Nigeria is run to meet what he says are considerable expectations from voters demanding more jobs and better public services.

"We are expected to generate employment for our unemployed youth," he said. "We are expected to revolutionize the agricultural sector and ensure food security for the people.  We are expected to sanitize the oil and gas sector.  The people also want good roads, a more qualitative public school system as well as a more efficient public health and transportation system.”

Stagnant economy

Economist Oderhohwo Oghenevwarhe says university graduates face a stagnant economy where many bosses demand payment to give out jobs.

"You have a lot of youths who have finished, who have graduated for some years now, when they go to the office to look for employment they will tell you bring some amount of money, very huge amounts of money," said Oghenevwarhe.  "How do you expect a graduate who do not have anything to bring money of that such?”

She says Nigerians want less talk and more action from the president's new cabinet.

"When they sit down in their meeting to discuss anything, they should discuss it and put it into practice," she added.  "Not just going there to discuss, sit under the air conditioning then when you come back you just share your own allowances and you go to your house and sit down.  That is not the expectation that people are expecting from them.”

Islamic militants fighting for a separate Muslim nation are President Jonathan's biggest security challenge following a series of bombings and ambushes in northern states.

"These expectations cut across all sectors," said Jonathan. "Most importantly, we are expected to protect life and property and guarantee the welfare and happiness of all Nigerians.”

Security improvements


Gabriel Asakene runs a non-profit group pushing for electoral reforms.  He says the Cabinet can improve security by better training police.

"They should try as much as possible to promulgate a policy that will reach the grass roots," he said. "They should equip our police.  They are not well organized.  The security of this country lies in the police.”

President Jonathan met this week with northern elders to discuss the campaign of violence by the sect known as Boko Haram.  Some leaders from Borno say he should withdraw soldiers from the state capital Maiduguri because troops there are attacking civilians.

Military commanders in Maiduguri say civilian leaders accusing soldiers of looting and rape are “sponsors, sympathizers and members” of the sect.

Boko Haram launched a coordinated uprising across much of the north in 2009.  That revolt was put down by the military in violence that killed more than 800 people, including Boko Haram leader Mohammed Yusuf.  Yusuf was captured alive.  Police say he was killed in a shootout while trying to escape.

Justice

Five policemen this week went on trial on charges of “unlawfully killing” Yusuf and other Boko Haram members.  They pled not guilty, and defense attorney Nelson Ezeagu asked for bail.

"First of all, you have to agree with us that they have their rights. Do you understand?  They are presumed innocent until the whole thing is gone.  And we are ready to go on to trial.  That is the main thing,” he said.

Prosecutor Ralph Ojabo says the recent attacks in Maiduguri have no bearing on the state's case but have brought it greater attention.

"We are prosecuting.  We are not persecuting," he said. "The facts available to us we will put before the court.  It is the court that will decide whether they are guilty or not guilty.  There is a lot of media hype concerning this matter.  We want to be able to try this case in court first before it is tried in the media.”

President Jonathan is appealing to Boko Haram to open talks with his government.  The group has so far refused, setting among their conditions the prosecution of the Yusuf case and apologies from northern governors who used force against them.  Several former and current governors have made public apologies.



You May Like

Karzai's Legacy: Missed Opportunities?

Afghanistan's president leaves behind a much different nation than the one he inherited, yet his legacy from 13 years in power is getting mixed reviews More

Video Secret Service Chief Under Fire for White House Security Breach

Julia Pierson faces tough questions from lawmakers after recent intrusion at White House, says: 'It is clear that our security plan was not executed properly' More

Frustrated, Liberian Students Want Ebola Fight Role

Thousands have volunteered to go to counties, rural villages to talk to people in their language about deadly virus More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihadi
X
Mahi Ramakrishnan
September 30, 2014 2:16 PM
Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihad

Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Could US Have Done More to Stop Rise of Islamic State?

President Obama says airstrikes against Islamic State militants in Syria will likely continue for some time because, in his words, "there is a cancer that has grown for too long." So what if President Obama had acted sooner in Syria to arm more-moderate opponents of both the Islamic State and the Syrian government? VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from the United Nations.
Video

Video Treasure Hunters Seek 'Hidden Treasure' in Central Kenya

Could a cave in a small village in central Kenya be the site of buried treasure? A rumor of riches, left behind by colonialists, has some residents dreaming of wealth, while others see it as a dangerous hoax. VOA's Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Iran's Rouhani Skeptical on Syria Strikes

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani expressed skepticism Friday that U.S.-led airstrikes in Iraq and Syria could crush Islamic State militants. From New York, VOA’s Margaret Besheer reports the president was also hopeful that questions about Iran’s nuclear program could be resolved soon.
Video

Video US House Speaker: Congress Should Debate Authorization Against IS

As wave after wave of U.S. airstrikes target Islamic State militants, the speaker of the Republican-controlled House of Representatives says he would be willing to call Congress back into session to debate a formal, broad authorization for the use of military force. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports from Washington, where legislators left town 10 days ago for a seven-week recess.
Video

Video Ebola Patients Find No Treatment at Sierra Leone Holding Center

At a holding facility in Makeni, central Sierra Leone, dozens of sick people sit on the floor in an empty university building. They wait in filthy conditions. It's a 16-hour drive by ambulance to Kailahun Ebola treatment center. Adam Bailes was there and reports on what he says are some of the worst situations he has seen since the beginning of this Ebola outbreak. And he says it appears case numbers may already be far worse than authorities acknowledge.
Video

Video Identifying Bodies Found in Texas Border Region

Thousands of immigrants have died after crossing the border from Mexico into remote areas of the southwestern United States in recent years. Local officials in south Texas alone have found hundreds of unidentified bodies and buried them in mass graves in local cemeteries. Now an anthropologist and her students at Baylor University have been exhuming bodies and looking for clues to identify them. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from Waco, Texas.
Video

Video Ebola Robs Liberians of Chance to Say Good-Bye to Loved Ones

In Liberia, where Ebola has killed more than 1,500 people, authorities have worked hard to convince people to allow specialized burial teams to take away dead bodies. But these safety measures, while necessary, make it hard for people to say good bye to their loved ones. VOA's Anne Look reports on the tragedy from Liberia.
Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.

AppleAndroid