I heartily greet and felicitate with all Nigerian children on the occasion of this year’s Children’s Day celebration.
I seize the opportunity of this year’s celebration which comes just two days before the first anniversary of the present Administration, to reassure our children and youth that we remain fully committed to fulfilling our promise of a better Nigeria for all of our people.
On this happy occasion for our children, I reaffirm my belief that it is the right of every Nigerian child to have access to quality and affordable education, as well as healthcare and other basic necessities for a good life, in a peaceful and secure environment.
The good health and well-being of Nigerian children remain a top priority on our agenda for national development and we have demonstrated our strong commitment in this regard with the allocation of N12.6 billion in the 2016 budget for vaccines and programmes to prevent childhood killer diseases such as polio, measles and yellow fever.
Other measures in the 2016 budget, such as the school feeding programme for children at a cost of N93.1 billion, will ensure that more children go to school and enjoy the fun of learning and growing together with their peers.
Despite the current economic and funding challenges facing our dear nation, my administration will continue to do all within its powers to achieve better living conditions and greater access to quality healthcare and education for all our youth.
It is a thing of joy that on this year’s Children’s Day, we can also celebrate the safe return of one of the Chibok girls, Amina Ali Nkeki, and many other abducted women and children who have been freed from the clutches of Boko Haram by our gallant troops.
I assure all Nigerians and friends of the country, once again, that my administration will not rest on its oars until the ungodly terrorist sect is totally eliminated from our country.
As peace gradually returns to the insurgency-ravaged North-Eastern States, the Federal Government will continue to work diligently to ensure the rapid and full reintegration and rehabilitation of all internally displaced persons, including orphaned children in the region.
We will also sustain and strengthen ongoing actions to protect children more effectively from violence, child-labour, child-trafficking, forced marriages and other related offences.
In return, I urge you all to imbibe and exhibit in greater measure, the virtues of hard work, diligence, discipline, honesty, prudence, selflessness and patriotism which are essential for the actualisation of our vision of a truly great nation.
The world now looks up to our dear nation, Nigeria as an exemplary model of democratic ideals after the smooth transition that brought our Administration to power.
You, our children and youth have a very significant role to play in ensuring that our democratic institutions of governance are continuously nurtured, improved and strengthened to underpin national development and prosperity.
Remain assured that under my leadership, the Federal Government will continue to do its best to prepare and equip you to show the world that with its brilliant, resourceful and resilient people, Nigeria is a country of incredible potential and opportunity.
I wish you all a Happy Children’s Day celebration.
Federal Republic of Nigeria
May 27, 2016.