June 12: No Alternative To Democracy – Lawan

The Senate president, Ahmad Lawan, has said that there is no better alternative to democracy, urging Nigerians to develop democratic principles as the country marks democracy day today.

Speaking at a press conference held at the National Assembly as part of activities marking the midterm of the 9th Assembly, Lawan said Nigerians must be patient and tolerance.

“We assure fellow citizens that we shall remain focused in our remaining years on other items on our legislative agenda, as they are geared towards reforming our system, and improving the wellbeing of our people,” Lawan said during the press conference.

“We call for patience, tolerance and understanding in the steady effort to improve our nation. Our differences should be our strength, realising that we are better staying together in peace and harmony, love and prosperity.

“On our part as legislators, we have worked collectively as a group, despite our partisan differences. National development and prosperity can only be attained through collective effort and resolve. We urge our fellow citizens to join us in this resolve, to raise a stronger nation. Together we can do it.
As we mark our democracy day, I congratulate all Nigerians. As there is no better alternative to democracy, we should continue to invest in building our nation along democratic principles,” he said.

On the security situation in the country, Lawan said peace will soon return advising that the stick and carrots approach should be adopted.

“Peace will soon return to the country. The security agencies have done alot and we are calling for a carrots and stick approach to be adopted.

“The senate calls on Nigerians to keep on supporting and praying for our men on the battlefield, realizing that we are all stakeholders in the building of a peaceful, virile and prosperous nation.

“We should also support the Services through the provision of valuable information, to be processed into intelligence, considering the changing patterns of crimes, besides the tendency of offenders to alter tactics.

“We also believe that all options should be on the table in our effort to achieve meaningful security in our country. We have been dutiful in the appropriation of funds, and in ensuring thorough oversight to ensure the funds are judiciously applied. We shall not detract from our responsibilities in accordance with our oath of office.

“The ninth senate has also aligned with the executive in the fight against corruption, because the malaise has been a bane in our development efforts.
Waste, and diversion of public funds are ills we cannot tolerate in the face of dwindling resources, increasing national debt, against the background of the need to stimulate the economy, through the appropriation of funds for infrastructure and utilities.

“The achievements we made in transparency and accountability, reflected in our dutiful oversighting, the exposure of inordinate practices during public hearings, and budget defenses; and in seeking clarifications for hazy expenditures and procurements, are feats that we have to sustain, to harness the longer-term benefits.
Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) are enjoined to imbibe prudence and proper book-keeping, to prevent future exposures to allegations of infractions. We have a duty to strengthen our governance mechanisms, and institutions, in accordance with the reform drives of President Muhammadu Buhari’s (GCFR) and the administration,” he said.

On the ban on Twitter, Lawan said he minister of information and culture, Lai Mohammed informed Nigerians that they are talking with twitter.

“Nigeria needs twitter just as twitter needs Nigeria. We hope the engagement will resolve the issue. Beyond that, I am an optimist, all of us would have learn our lessons,”Lawan said.

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