By Levinus Nwabughiogu & By Gbenga Oke
ABUJA — All Progressives Congress, APC, Presidential Candidate, General Muhammadu Buhari (retd), yesterday, in Abuja, said APC government would not only initiate policies and programmes that would impact positively on the lives of youths and women, if voted into office, but would also provide the necessary military equipment and personnel to end insurgency in the country.
In two separate statements, through APC and APC Presidential Campaign Organisation, APCPCO, Buhari promised Nigerians a better and safer country if APC was voted into power in the February 14 presidential election.
Buhari, while expressing his condolence to the families of members of the Armed Forces who lost their lives in various military operations to keep Nigeria secure including the current battle against the insurgents in North East, in a statement through APC, said: ‘’May their gentle souls rest in perfect peace. An APC government will provide the necessary military equipment and personnel to prosecute the battle effectively and efficiently as soon as we are voted into power in the forthcoming elections.
“APC as a party also recognises the sufferings of the pensioners whose pension arrears and gratuity have remained a serious problem. This will be corrected by the APC government.
“I urge you all in the Armed Forces to remain apolitical and focus on the ethos of discipline which is the hallmark of your profession. I wish to assure you of my unalloyed commitment to returning the Armed Forces to its place of pride among comity of nations.
“I am aware of the neglect of the military over the years and assure you that everything will be done within available resources to train and equip the military to the level comparable with other developed armies of the world in the shortest possible time.
“The Nigerian military had accomplished a lot of feats in building and ensuring global security and peace in conjunction with the armed forces of other great nations of the world as was experienced in the Congo, Sierra-Leone, Liberia, Lebanon and other areas (since the Armed Forces were established) Therefore, I call on all Nigerians to join us in the APC in our quest to making Nigeria a better place for all.
In another statement through, APCPCO’s Directorate of Media and Publicity of the campaign organisation, Buhari said: “APC’s manifesto contains several innovations and legislative proposals that will promote the manpower development and social participation of women and youths in the country.
The statement, signed by Mallam Garba Shehu, said: “Drawing extensively from the information contained in the APC’s manifesto, a federal government under the leadership of Buhari promises to offer women and youths in Nigeria a new deal.
“We are firmly committed to the value that women are the backbone of the Nigerian society, especially in our rural communities. Therefore, issues that matter to the average Nigerian woman cut across the spectrum of policy areas, such as agriculture – where they predominate as farmers and farm labourers – to health and education, where their concern for their children are paramount.
“Our policy position for women takes into cognisance the fact that in spite of several rights outlined in the 1999 Constitution, many women do not enjoy the same freedoms as men, particularly in the fields of education, economic empowerment and political participation.
“No society can progress where half of its population suffers systemic discrimination. An APC government will seek to end all forms of gender discrimination in both public and private sectors, in education, employment and housing and also protect equal property and inheritance rights.”
The statement explained the core policy objectives of the APC for women and youths to include, “improving anti-discriminatory legislation and instituting merit-based action in employment; injecting gender as a component of federal character and appointing a Minister for Women and Gender in the Office of the President.”