President Muhammadu Buhari said on Wednesday that he would work harder this second term than he did in the last four years to confront the country’s challenges.
He assured Nigerians that he would deliver more in tackling insecurity, corruption and improving on the economy to make the country a better place than he found it in 2015.
Buhari spoke in Abuja when he met with the leadership of the Arewa Consultative Forum at the Presidential Villa.
The group, which was led by the Chairman of the Board of Trustees, Alhaji Adamu Fika, had visited the President to congratulate him on his re-election.
“This is my last lap and I will try to work even harder than I have done.
“I assure you, I will not let you down, I will do my best and I will pray to God, my best will be good enough. I thank you very much indeed,” he stated.
Still savouring the joy of his first victory in 2015 when he defeated incumbent former President Goodluck Jonathan, the President singled out the introduction of the Permanent Voter Card as one of the factors that facilitated his victory.
Having won another election on February 23 for another term of four years, Buhari said he could only be grateful to Nigerians, promising to work harder this time round than before.
Showing appreciation over the visit, he added, “I am very appreciative of this visit, especially when I have seen some of my seniors, some of my colleagues and a couple of my juniors, among the team.
“This reminds me of the good old days when we were in the military. Actually, nobody drops from the sky. For the Arewa Consultative Forum to identify with me, having come from this geopolitical zone, I am very much appreciative of this.
“I am very pleased with the address of the chairman, who reminded me of the undertaking we made basically on the three important things my party campaigned on (insecurity, corruption and economy) and succeeded.”
The President, in the results declared by the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, polled 15,191,847 votes to beat the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, who scored 11,262,978 ballots.
Speaking earlier, Fika told the President that the group was elated that he won again the second time.
He said in 2016, the group had also visited Buhari to make a case for the provision of infrastructure in the North.
Fika expressed gratitude that projects such as the Baro Dry Port, the Mambilla Hydro Power and others in the agricultural sub-sector had been touched in the North.
He added, “It is pleasing to note that since then, the Baro dry port has been commissioned, while all other projects have been reactivated and now being implemented.”
Fika said the group was impressed by Buhari’s performance in his first term, especially in delivering some important projects like the Baro Dry Port in the North.
He noted that the President had succeeded in meeting some of the forum’s demands which were presented to him during a similar congratulatory mission in 2015.
“We wish to recall that in 2015, a similar delegation of the ACF visited and congratulated you following Your Excellency’s victory at the presidential elections held earlier that year.
“A year later, May 2016, you were kind enough to grant an audience to another delegation of the forum.
“On that occasion, the delegation, led by the late Alhaji Yusuf Maitama Sule, Danmasanin Kano, drew your attention to projects of concern to the North and of benefit to Nigeria at large.
“The projects included the Baro Inland Water Port, the Mambilla Hydro Power, self-sufficiency in agriculture, road construction and rehabilitation, and above all, oil and gas exploration.
He also pledged to revive the railway and provide a dual carriage way that would boost economic activities at the port.
The Baro Port project was first designed during the Buhari’s days as Chairman of the defunct Petroleum Trust Fund.
The ACF chieftain expressed the hope that the organs of government charged with the responsibility of implementing the affected projects would “double their efforts to ensure that they were fully executed and within reasonable time.