Full speech of Buhari’s closing remarks at ministerial retreat

Closing remarks by his excellency, Muhammadu Buhari, President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria at the end of midterm ministerial performance review retreat Tuesday 12th October 2021.

After two days of intensive discussions, we have come to the end of a successful Retreat where we reviewed progress on the implementation of the ministerial mandates along with the Nine Priority Areas of this administration.
2. The retreat provided an opportunity for us to undertake an objective assessment of our stewardship in line with the contract we signed with the Nigerian people to deliver on our electoral promises.
3. We reflected on what we have done and identified areas where we need to improve and refocus our attention during the remaining period of our Administration.
4. From the assessment report and discussions at this retreat, I am glad to note that progress has been made towards the achievement of our objectives.
5. The independent performance assessment report presented on day one of the retreat, indicates that significant progress has been achieved in the delivery of the Ministerial Mandates.
6. Distinguished participants, the discussions at the retreat have prompted the need for us to ramp up implementation on the deliverables. We must close the gaps in our implementation efforts to ensure that we attain set targets by 2023.
7. To achieve this, the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation is to immediately begin the process of convening quarterly coordination meetings for each priority area based on the collaborative results framework.
This is with aim to ascertain status of implementation across the nine priority areas, identify bottlenecks, and proffer immediate solutions. All Ministers and Permanent Secretaries must be in attendance. These are not meetings to delegate.
8. The Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation is to immediately commence engagement with stakeholders to agree and push forward a framework for the institutionalisation of the Central Delivery Coordinating Unit.
9. All Ministers and Permanent Secretaries are to promote a robust performance culture across their MDAs by setting up intra-ministerial delivery task teams.
10. The Head of Service should as a matter of urgency invest in capacity strengthening of the Planning, Research and Statistics departments in all MDAs. This should be done in collaboration with the Central Delivery Coordinating Unit.
11. Let me assure Nigerians that this Administration will continue to implement fiscal measures to improve our domestic revenues and mobilise external funding support to build a more resilient economy. There must be synergy between the Fiscal and Monetary authorities to keep the economy on the trajectory of growth.
12. Distinguished Ladies and gentlemen, issues around expanding access to quality education, affordable healthcare and productivity of Nigerians will be given priority attention within the period of this administration.
13. We will sustain all ongoing efforts in rebuilding our health system through targeted investment in the health sector, especially our vaccination drive to halt the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.
This administration remains committed to providing the education and training required for employment and entrepreneurship, particularly using technology to impact the relevant skills on our youths.
14. Our Social Investment Programmes will be sustained in the coming years. We will continue to reach out to the poorest and most vulnerable households through the National Cash Transfer Programme and other initiatives of Government.
The Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development has been directed to come up with a legislative framework for social protection that also guarantees its funding stream.
15. In view of the critical role of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises in economic growth and development, efforts will be geared towards removing all bottlenecks that militate against access to government support schemes by SMEs.
Government will adopt a holistic approach to industrialisation that is aligned with Nigeria’s aspirations and requirements, working closing with key stakeholders in the private sector. We will continue to support SMEs in view of their multiplier effect on the economy.
16. On the National Single Window Project, the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning is directed to ensure all relevant MDAs involved in the implementation of the project complete all processes needed for effective take-off of the National Single Window platform by first quarter of 2022.
17. In our determination to build systems to fight corruption and improve governance, this administration will continue to address the issues that foster corruption and impair transparency in the management of public resources. Efforts will be geared towards improving coordination and synergy between anti-corruption agencies.
18. To improve on our infrastructure development, government will prioritise funding and ensure that all high-priority ongoing infrastructure projects are completed before the end of this Administration. The Presidential Infrastructure Development Fund will continue to support the delivery of our legacy infrastructure projects across the country.
19. Distinguished participants, I am confident that the lessons we have learned in the last two years of implementing our Policies, Programmes and Projects will serve as the needed tool to propel every Ministry to remain committed, towards the achievement of our developmental objectives. I therefore charge all of you to step-up, double your efforts and work in synergy toward total delivery of our Administration’s set target.
20. Finally, I would like to thank Secretary to the Government of the Federation and his team for successfully organising this retreat.
21. I wish to also sincerely thank all of the resource persons that have added immense value to this process. Well done and thank you all.
God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

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