Malam Garba Shehu, Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, says the Federal Government needs the support of Nigerians to defeat corruption.
He made the statement on Tuesday in Abuja while addressing a group of pro-Buhari protesters under the umbrella of Citizens Support for Good Governance in Nigeria.
He expressed joy that the people who voted the government into power, were out to show their support and solidarity for it.
“We welcome your demonstration; we welcome your support because this is what will keep the government strong.
“The war against corruption has very powerful enemies, enemies who have resources, the kind of monies that even government doesn’t have,” he said.
Addressing the protesters, Mr Babachir Lawal, Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) thanked them for their support, saying that government was encouraged with the show of solidarity.
He said the President was encouraged by such support to work round the clock to ensure that Nigeria was brought back to economic prosperity in an all-inclusive government.
The President was aware of the “temporary suffering’’ Nigerians were going through, adding that the development was giving him (Buhari) pains.
Lawal said sufferings Nigerians were presently going through had to be borne now for prosperity and goodness to return to the country.
“There is no cure without medicine, it is for no reason that quinine is very bitter, but after you have taken it, you get well.
“Buhari didn’t anticipate the problem we are in; the people who caused this problem are the ones challenging the government,’’ he said.
The SGF declared that those who do not want the government to succeed would fail, adding that the Buhari-led administration inherited virtually collapsed economy.
He expressed optimism that in spite of the country`s present challenges, its economy would begin to boom again in the next one year.
He said that the Federal Government was laying solid foundation that would put the country`s economy on the right footings.
Moses Abdullahi, who led the protest, said Nigeria was passing through a difficult phase in its history as a result of bad governance since the return to democracy in 1999.
“Nigeria is going through a difficult phase, a phase that is not the making of this administration, but rather a consequence of decades of bad governance.
“Decay and maladministration by a few under a banner now synonymous with corruption. Nigeria can only change when we support the government and do our bit and not allow ourselves to be used as agents of destruction and political thuggery,’’ he said.
Abdullahi declared that since its inception, the Buhari-led administration had recorded major achievements in the areas of security and in the fight against corruption.
He said the administration had also, to a large extent, improved the country`s economy and electricity generation, adding that the administration had also improved the country`s image in the international community.
Abdullahi said that since the introduction of the whistle blower policy by the Federal Government, a staggering N150 billion looted funds had been recovered.
He added that about N2.9 billion was also being saved monthly from the expulsion of names of ghost workers from the Federal Civil Service payroll.
While pledging continued loyalty to the Buhari-led government, Abdullahi said the group would not give up on the administration.
He, however, blamed Nigerian youths especially, for keeping mute in the last 16 years while looting of public funds by public office holders continued.
“If for nothing else, we are all responsible for keeping mute; we have come out in our millions across Nigeria to tell our President that Nigerians completely support his administration,” he said.
Earlier, the protesters had converged on the Unity Fountain before heading to the Presidential Villa.
They carried placards with different inscriptions supporting the Buhari-led administration.