The Head, European Union (EU) Delegation to Nigeria, Ambassador Michel Arrion, has called on the President-elect, Gen Muhammadu Buhari, to galvanise the country’s massive population into a formidable productive force that would generate wealth which can be equitably distributed among the citizens.
Arrion, who described Nigeria as a rich country with poor citizens, said the incoming government has a lot to do in this regard.
He spoke at the occasion of the Europe Day on Friday night in Abuja.
According to him, democracy only makes meaning to the common man to the extent that it delivers good governance, creates opportunities and improves the quality of living.
Arrion, therefore, charged that “as the new government comes on stream, the world would want to see a Nigeria where the basic freedoms that distinguish democratic societies, including economic rights and welfare, are not the exclusive preserve of a privileged few.”
He said: “Nigeria is rich, but Nigerians are poor. The in-coming administration will have a lot to do in this regard, in ensuring that Nigeria’s massive population is galvanised into a formidable productive force that will generate wealth that is equally – or rather equitably – shared among all citizens.”
The envoy, who noted that Buhari’s goals for Nigeria matched closely the EU’s vision for the country, also advised the president-elect to include regional integration in his agenda.
“President-elect Buhari has promised before and after his election to pursue three priority objectives: to swiftly end the insurgency in the northeast and restore peace and stability; to eradicate corruption and to put policies in place to put Nigeria’s economy on a surer footing. We strongly believe that peace and stability, as well as the economic development of Nigeria, will be better achieved within the framework of a closer and deeper co-operation of Nigeria with its neighbours in West and Central Africa,” Arrion said.