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President to Partner National Assembly on Boko Haram ... As Senate Holds 2012 Retreat in Uyo
26 Jun 2012: Okon Bassey

President Goodluck Jonathan Monday in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, called on the National Assembly to close ranks with the executive under a renewed political contract to safeguard the nation against the Boko Haram insurgency. Jonathan, who made the call while declaring open the Senate Retreat 2012, said: “Some have said the root cause of this menace includes weak moral conditions, poverty, dirty politics, poor governance, unemployment, religious intolerance and fanaticism.

“Whatever is the cause, the solution lies in a strong union by all tiers of government to create employment and wealth creation, equity and justice, transparency and accountability and the fear of God. If God didn’t wish it, we will not be the leaders of this country today. Our unity is the will of God and our diversity is finding ligament in our strength. Let us unite to defeat the force of darkness. As a government, my responsibility is to lay a firm foundation for our people to prosper through legislation, executive passion and timely dispensation justice.”

He said that the basic interest of all branches of government was the security and welfare of people, adding that the principle of separation of power does not overrule this fact. He called on both arms of government to see each other as partners and not as competitors or rivals. “Let us continue to work together for the good of the nation,” the president said.

Asking for the understanding of all Nigerians, the president extended a hand of fellowship to all patriotic lawmakers, stressing the need to forge a strong consensus and promotion of dialogue that will move the nation forward, not backward. “We must not mix politics with everything and certainly not with the sensitive matter of national security. This is a trying period for us as a nation, the challenge of insecurity should unite us,” he added.

President Jonathan commended the Senate for its sincerity and commitment in initiating the discussion on national security, saying the Senate needs the support of all the political parties and must place national security above politics.

He regretted that politics has become a major source of insecurity as evidenced in the do-or-die politics of some politicians, indicating that some inflammatory statements emanating from some politicians at different times endanger the foundation of the nation.

Jonathan said the development particularly concerns him as the president and vowed to deal with it decisively. “I seek the support of the Senate and the cooperation of the House of Representatives. We must work together under a renewed political contract to safeguard our nation. “As leaders, we must be resilient in the face of terror, the task of building a greater Nigeria to achieve our destiny is a duty of all of us. “We are one government and one constituent being Nigeria, we must continue to close ranks as separate but complementary arms of one government and make democracy that meets the needs of all our people and guarantees safety and security,” Jonathan stated.

The president insisted that through cooperation between the executive, legislature and judicial, the Boko Haram menace would sure come to an end.

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