REMARKS BY THE HMBNP, SENATOR UDOMA UDO UDOMA, AT THE OFFICIAL COMMISSIONING AND PRESENTATION OF SPORTS EQUIPMENT BY THE FG TO PUBLIC PRIMARY SCHOOLS IN AKWA-IBOM STATE
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REMARKS BY THE GUEST OF HONOUR AND HONOURABLE MINISTER OF BUDGET & NATIONAL PLANNING, SENATOR UDOMA UDO UDOMA, AT THE OFFICIAL COMMISSIONING AND PRESENTATION OF SPORTS EQUIPMENT BY THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT TO PUBLIC PRIMARY SCHOOLS IN AKWA-IBOM STATE, ON TUESDAY 24TH JANUARY, 2017
I am delighted and highly honoured to be invited as Guest of Honour to the official commissioning and presentation of sports equipment by the Federal Government to select public primary schools in Akwa-Ibom state.
2. The innovative approach of the Management of the National Lottery Trust Fund (NLTF) to support the development of social infrastructure around the country deserves commendation, particularly in pursuing this aspect that seeks to promote social inclusion through grassroots sports development.
3. Today’s event marks a significant milestone for national lottery in Nigeria and I commend the NLTF for targeting about 60 primary schools in the state. This occasion therefore celebrates the progress made by the Fund in promoting good causes for the benefit of ordinary Nigerians.
4. It is our hope that this programme will remain sustainable for the continuous benefit of our children in Akwa-Ibom in particular and the nation in general.
5. Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen, government is aware of the huge potentials of lottery as a revenue earner and its capacity to transform sports, public infrastructure and social services.
6. This Administration, under the leadership of His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari, is determined to enhance performance in service delivery for Nigerians in all sectors of the economy as well as promote transparency in public procurement, probity and accountability in governance.
7. Our vision for an improved Nigeria is unambiguous and non negotiable. When we came into government, we came out with a Strategic Implementation Plan (SIP) which was a short term economic plan to drive the implementation of the 2016 Budget, but we promised that we were going to deliver a more comprehensive economic recovery and growth Plan.
8. In developing the plan, we said there will be extensive consultation with relevant stakeholders, including the state governments. We engaged and discussed with economic experts, the organized private sector, civil society groups, the academia and State governments. The plan is now ready and will soon be launched. This is the plan that fed into the 2017 Budget.
9. The focus of the plan is to get the economy out of recession, to get people back to work, to move Nigeria from a consuming nation to a producing nation, to provide an environment for ease of doing business and to create jobs, among others.
10. Your Excellency, Ladies and Gentlemen, let me reiterate at this point that government will support business initiatives that will deepen the growth of the economy and expand the disposal income of everyday Nigerians. Government is focused on making the environment conducive for doing business. That is why the Presidential Committee on Ease of Doing Business was inaugurated and is working vigorously to deliver on this score.
11. We therefore enjoin the National Lottery Trust Fund to play its role by contributing to the development of social infrastructure around the nation, particularly towards rebuilding hospitals, schools, parks, sports centres, among others, with efficient and effective coordination of human and material resources.
12. It is pleasing to note that the project being commissioned today is targeted at young people especially children from our rural communities where government programmes that aim to improve their wellbeing are often lacking or less accessible. It is in this light that I see the current intervention by the national lottery as very expedient and timely.
13. This therefore underscores the passion of the Buhari administration in helping youths to be productive by refocusing their energy towards active participation in sports. As you are aware, games and sports are very rewarding ventures today, so every opportunity that will enrich our youths should be encouraged.
14. While commending the Fund for its initiative and hoping that beneficiaries will put the equipment to good use, let me also invite the private sector to identify with the process of rejuvenating grassroots sports and broadening talent base for immediate and long term positive outcomes towards the country’s quest for regional and international sports competitiveness.
15. You Excellency, distinguished ladies and gentlemen, let me once again appreciate the NLTF for this invitation; and I thank you all for your attention.