2015 was ushered out with fireworks, dancing and prayers as the new year, 2016 was heralded in by all and sundry.
The previous year was thoroughly eventful- although it ended on a rather somber note for many Nigerians as fuel scarcity yet lingers, the Naira continuously drops in value in the international market, bombs are still being detonated by Boko Haram, while protests are becoming a regularity.
As Nigerians enter the New Year with hope for their general state of being to get better, here is a list of 10 things most citizens expect from the Federal Government in 2016.
- Defeat Boko Haram completely, not technically.
During the campaign for the presidential polls, the All Progressives Congress gallantly promised Nigerians to defeat and vanquish the dangerous Boko Haram sect in no time if elected into the Aso Villa.
Their flag bearer, Muhammadu Buhari won the election and raised the hopes of Nigerians by promising that insurgency would end before the close of the year 2015.
As the year cascaded to a close, the Federal Government claimed technical victory over the terrorists prompting fresh attacks on Borno and Adamawa states, by the insurgents.
In 2016, Nigerians desperately hope that the Federal Government would literally defeat the Boko Haram menace in totality and not technically.
- Begin payment of N5,000 allowance to unemployed youths.
Another promise made by the All Progressives Congress which is yet to be delivered to Nigerians is the payment of a monthly allowance of N5,000 to unemployed youths across the country.
Since getting into the power, the feasibility of the payment plan has been discussed extensively with the government sometimes giving reasons why it cannot cover all unemployed youths.
The payment is meant to commence in January 2016, according to some members of the Buhari cabinet, and Nigerians are hoping and expecting the government to fulfill this particular promise.
- Fight corruption squarely.
One of the major strong points of the current administration is the fight against corruption and investigations into diversion of funds meant for public use by individuals in power.
More prominent and public in the government’s fight against corruption is the $2 billion arms scandal in which Sambo Dasuki and a host of other public figures are currently embroiled.
In 2016, Nigerians expect the government to extend its sweeping arm of righteousness across political party lines and fight the good fight without picking favorites.
- Provide one meal a day for school pupils.
During the campaign for presidential election, a meal a day was promised by the APC to schoolchildren across the country.
This is yet to implemented and Nigerians are hopeful that the Federal Government would justify the faith and belief that made people come out and vote en masse for President Buhari.
- End the continued fuel scarcity across the nation.
For more than three months, the nation has faced a gigantic challenge of getting fuel at pump stations as the battle between the Federal Government and oil marketers raged on behind the scenes.
Queues for fuel at different petrol stations were seen to be longer than giant constrictors as several petrol stations stopped selling petrol for lack of availability.
As the New Year dawns on the nation, Nigerians hope that fuel scarcity would soon abate.
- Reduction of pump price of petrol.
It may be too little to cheer but little is better than nothing.
The Federal Government has on different platforms hinted on the possible removal of the subsidy on oil which would inadvertently result in the skyrocketing of the price of petrol.
However, a few weeks ago, the government announced that the pump rice for petrol would be regulated to about N86 per liter and Nigerians are really hoping that the government keep to its words.
- Save the failing Naira.
The Nigerian currency continues to struggle in the international market, falling as low as N265 to a dollar in December.
The government has effected different measures to ensure that the Naira regains its value even as investors are set to pull out of the nation due to the Naira’s loss of value.
The fall has also affected the import and export market greatly leading to a likely economic crunch and inflation in the country.
The Federal Government would do well by Nigerians to initiate policies that save the failing Naira and resuscitate the nation’s currency.
- Create more jobs for teeming unemployed youths.
The count of unemployed youths in the country is quite staggering.
During the presidential campaign, Vice President Osibanjo promised Nigerians that if voted in, the administration would ensure that 2 million jobs were immediately provided for the teeming population of unemployed youths in the country.
Months after getting into power, nothing has been forthcoming in this department.
The Vice President also recently promised that 1 million jobs would be created in 2016.
Despite being a million short of the initial projected number during the campaign, Nigerians still expect that 1 million jobs will be created.
This would significantly help in curbing the blight of unemployment in the country.
- The President cuts the frequency of his travels.
In 2015, President Buhari frequently made trip across the world at state expense, some of which some people have described as unnecessary considering the myriads of challenges the country is facing.
From the proposed budget for 2016 submitted by the president to the 8th Senate, it would appear, from the staggering amount designated for presidential travels, that the frequency of President Buhari’s journeys abroad would not abate.
It remains to be seen however, what the Federal government has in stock for Nigerians in that respect, in the New Year.
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