Former Vice President and presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, has highlighted poverty and illiteracy as parts of the major challenges Nigeria must tackle urgently.
Following his repeated calls on the Federal Government to give special attention to the menace, Atiku believes this would go a long way in addressing the issue of insecurity and other problems bevelling the nation.
In his New Year message on Tuesday, the elder statesman observed that the rate of insecurity would reduce in the country if poverty was addressed, with a special focus on the war against insurgency in the North East.
“The problems of extreme poverty and scant investments in education play huge roles in fuelling the problems of violent extremism that we spent the past decade contending with.
“We cannot win the fight against terrorism if we do nothing to reduce or eliminate poverty and illiteracy.
“The reality of this new decade requires us to recalibrate our approaches and to pursue some tough choices. If failure is not an option, then we must let go of our egos and conveniences,” the PDP candidate said.
According to him, the New Year will require Nigerians to stay together more than ever before to take on, head front, the common enemy of insecurity.
Atiku said he does not share what he described as the sentiment that the outgone 2019 was a successful year for Nigerians.
He stated, “The bitter truth is that Nigeria is still in the throes of economic instability, with more people losing jobs and the attendant outcome of more children being out of school and more families having hard time in accessing basic needs of life.”
The former vice president, therefore, called on the Muhammadu Buhari administration to review its economic policies and improve the situation.
He also stressed the need for a deliberate effort to improve the material wellbeing of the people by lifting millions of Nigerians out of poverty into prosperity.