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NNPP Presidential Candidate Kwankwaso Unveils Blueprint, Promises Improved Security, Better Education, Restructuring

The former Minister of Defence promised to increase the number of personnel in the Nigeria Police and Armed Forces to at least million each.

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The presidential candidate of the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP), Senator Rabiu Kwankwaso has unveiled his blueprint for the development of Nigeria if elected at the 2023 general election.

Kwankwaso unveiled the document in Abuja, on Tuesday, where he promised to restore and reposition the country towards greatness, where all citizens would maximise their potential and live in peace, justice and unity.

The former Minister of Defence promised to rejig the nation’s security architecture by increasing the number of personnel in the Nigeria Police and Armed Forces to at least million each.

He said he would provide enough manpower for tackling the deteriorating security situation of the country and provide job opportunities for youths that would be recruited into the security forces.

“In a country of over 200 million citizens and with a Police force of less than 230,000 personnel and an Armed Forces of less than 250,000 men (combined — army, navy and air force), one needs not go any further to see where the main problem lies!

“And where these grossly inadequate forces are not fully equipped, not properly motivated, and not thoughtfully deployed, the threats will only be aggravated.

“The size of the Nigerian Armed Forces will be built to about one million active service men and women. The size of the Nigerian Police will also be built to about one million active service men and women.

“This will bring the police-to-citizen ratio to 1:220 (much better than the UN recommended minimum of 1: 450). The numbers can easily be obtained from the pool of able-bodied unemployed youth that are roaming our streets in all the 8,809 wards,” the presidential hopeful stated in the document.

Kwankwaso also vowed to tackle the dwindling economic situation of the country by assembling the best brains and hands that could drive his administration’s economic policies and tackle inflation as well as other economic quagmires.

“The Ministries of Finance, Trade and Investment, the Central Bank of Nigeria, the Nigeria National Petroleum Company Limited, the Federal Inland Revenue Service, the Nigeria Customs Service and the Nigeria Port Authority will be handled by Nigerians with the highest level of competence while a sound and knowledgeable National Economic Adviser will also be appointed,” he said.

He added: “We will run an emergency rescue plan to salvage the economy, protect the citizens’ savings, restore fiscal discipline, improve crude oil and gas production, improve non-oil revenue, target inflation, save the Naira from the current uncontrolled devaluation, and limit capital flight from the country.

“We shall expand the tax base and the tax net by ensuring that businesses that are actively avoiding and/or evading tax are brought into the tax system

“We shall create the enabling environment where trade, investments and businesses will blossom and manufacturing (re-industrialization) will be the pivot upon which the Nigerian economy will stand. More and more jobs will be created through targeted investments, special accelerated projects and programmes.

“The economy will be actively diversified. Aggressive effort will be made to strengthen the non-oil sectors, hone the potentialities, harness the opportunities and harvest the yields for the good of all Nigerians

“Recognising that our debt profile is quite unhealthy, we shall renegotiate and reschedule the debt repayment portfolio so as to run our economy on surplus to allow the rebuilding of the country infrastructure post-insurgency and terrorism.”

On education, the presidential candidate said there would be free registration of West African Examination Council (WAEC), National Examination Council (NECO), Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) and National Board for Technical Education (NATEB).

He said JAMB examination would have a moratorium of four years and all scholarships would be harmonised to reach the less privileged, adding that 20 million children of school age would be mopped out from streets and improve girl child education in the next four years.

“Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso (RMK) administration believes that examination bodies are not revenue generating agencies and must not operate as such. The notion that any examination body will generate income and contribute to the federation accounts is a misnomer.

“For our administration, no Nigerian child shall be denied the opportunity to write WAEC, NECO, JAME, etc. because of their inability to pay exorbitant registration/ examination fees. These examinations shall be free and all application forms for admission into tertiary education institutions (TEls) shall also be free.

“The notion that matriculation examination in Nigeria expires after one year will be stopped forthwith. JAMB results under the RMK government will have a lifespan of four years and TEls will be required to accept these results for the purposes of admission,” Kwankwaso declared.

On agriculture he said priority would be placed on mechanised farming and commodities boards would re-established to protect farmers and the private sector would be encouraged to set up agricultural value chains enterprises to create millions of jobs to the teeming youths.

Kwankwaso said the power sector would be placed on top priority list to enhance industrialisation, adding that all major rivers would be dredged and major dams constructed to tackle erosion while existing laws will be reviewed to produce more medical professionals.

Speaking on health, he said more Primary Health Care (PHCs) facilities, well-equipped to handle common ailments as well as serve as a focus for health education would be provided.

“Our PHCs nationwide will be upgraded from mere referral centres to treatment and medication centres with all the essentials needed to run effectively. We shall invest in infrastructure and ensure that diagnosis, therapeutic apparatus and consumables are readily available in our hospitals.”

Juliet Akoje