President Muhammadu Buhari says his administration ’ s attention is increasingly being focused on cybercrimes and the abuse of technology through hate speech and other divisive material being propagated on social media .
The Nigerian leader made this known when he addressed the nation via a broadcast to mark Nigeria’ s 59 th Independence Anniversary in Abuja on Tuesday .
The president enjoined all citizens to always exercise restraint , tolerance and mutual respect in airing their grievances and frustrations .
“ Whilst we uphold the Constitutional rights of our people to freedom of expression and association , where the purported exercise of these rights infringes on the rights of other citizens or threatens to undermine our National Security , we will take firm and decisive action .
“ In this regard , I reiterate my call for all to exercise restraint , tolerance and mutual respect in airing their grievances and frustrations .
“ Whilst the ongoing national discourse on various political and religious issues is healthy and welcome , we must not forget the lessons of our past – lessons that are most relevant on a day such as this .
According to him, the path of hatred and distrust only leads to hostility and destruction .
He believed that the vast majority of Nigerians would rather tread the path of peace and prosperity , “ as we continue to uphold and cherish our unity . ’’
On security , Buhari said that good governance and economic development could not be sustained without an enabling environment of peace and security .
“ In the last four years, we have combatted the terrorist scourge of Boko Haram .
“ We owe a debt of gratitude to our gallant men and women in arms , through whose efforts we have been able to achieve the present results .
“ We are also grateful to our neighbours and allies – within the region and across the world – who have supported us on this front . ”
He reassured that the capacity of the armed forces to defend the Nation ’ s territorial integrity would continue to be enhanced by the acquisition of military hardware as well as continued improvements in the working conditions of the security personnel .
On the 59 th Independence Anniversary, Buhari stated that 1 st October each year is an opportunity for citizens to reflect and thank God for his endless blessings on Nigeria.
He said , “ It is also a time for us , collectively , to : remember the sacrifices made by our Founders and great leaders past ; by soldiers , by distinguished public servants ; by traditional leaders , by our workers ; sacrifices on which Nigeria has been built over the 59 years since Independence in 1960 .
“ Rededicate ourselves to attaining the goals which we have set for ourselves : a united , prosperous and purposeful nation in the face of 21 st century opportunities and challenges . ’’
The president noted with delight that in the past four years, the majority of Nigerians had committed to “ Change for the Better ” .
“ Indeed , this Administration was re – elected by Nigerians on a mandate to deliver positive and enduring Change – through maintaining our National Security ; restoring sustainable and inclusive Economic Growth and Development; and fighting Corruption against all internal and external threats .
“ This Change can only be delivered if we are united in purpose , as individuals and as a nation . ’’
He , therefore , urged all Nigerians to remain committed to “ achieving this positive and enduring Change .
“ As I stated four years ago , “ Change does not just happen … We must change our lawless habits , our attitude to public office and public trust … simply put , to bring about change , we must change ourselves by being law – abiding citizens.”