By Ismaila Chafe
President Muhammadu Buhari has expressed his deep attachment to the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC), saying it broadens the horizon of citizens, opens up opportunities and enhances understanding of cultural differences.
Malam Garba Shehu, the President’s Senior Special Assistant on Media, in a statement on Tuesday, said Buhari made his feelings known at his country home, Daura, Katsina State, when he hosted youth corps members serving in Daura.
The youth corps members were at the president’s residence on Eid-el-Kabir homage.
The president said he had consistently commended former Head of State, retired Gen. Yakubu Gowon for the initiative, which had created more opportunity for uniting the country.
Buhari urged the youth corps members to make the most out of the opportunity of travelling around the country, especially in understanding different climates, cultures, languages and outviews on life.
“Everytime I meet with former Head of State, Gen. Yakubu Gowon, like recently, I still commend him for the initiative of the NYSC. The NYSC is spectacular in many ways.
“Some of you have come from Port Harcourt, Lagos and Calabar and you can now feel the heat of Daura and how close it is to the desert,” he said.
The president said the NYSC scheme was well thought-out to unite the country through understanding.
“I feel very strongly about the NYSC and I am wishing you all the very best.
“I assure you that you will be much better as Nigerians after your experience,’’ he added.
The Corps Liason Officer, Mr Umaru Babayo, thanked the president for all the efforts and sacrifices to restore peace in the country, and the policies to diversify the economy, with agriculture as the main driver.
He said the Emir of Daura, Alhaji Faruk Umar Faruk, had shown a lot of kindness and warmth to corps members as well in his domain, appreciating the community for always supporting them.
Babayo assured the president of prayers for a successful tenur, and God’s providence in decision making that will move the country forward.
Buhari, who gave the corps members two cows from his farm, 20 bags of rice and N1 million, had earlier joined Muslim faithful to observe the Eid-el-Kabir prayer.
The president, who fielded questions from newsmen at the end of the prayer session, enjoined Nigerians to remain steadfast and be security conscious to tackle the nation’s security challenges.
He also called on Nigerians to assist the security agencies by exposing the bad elements in the society, saying all peace loving individuals must mobilise themselves against the activities of bandits and insurgents.
“Nigerians should remain steadfast and I think the Emir said it all and those who addressed the people – they should be security conscious.
“Those that are distracting the attention of government at all levels – local, state and federal – they live amongst them, they know them, let them expose them so that we have peace in the country,’’ he urged. (NAN)