Two Years of Delivering Change

 State Broadcast by Malam Nasir El-Rufai, Governor of Kaduna State, on the Second Anniversary of the APC Government of Kaduna State; Kaduna, 29 May 2017

Dear People of Kaduna State,

With gratitude to the Almighty, I salute you all on this day. It has been my privilege to lead the government that you elected in April 2015. Today marks the second anniversary of our formal assumption of the responsibility for leading the state.

On behalf of our team, I wish to acknowledge the support that you have provided to your government. Through tough times and in moments of calm, we have been buoyed by the steadfastness of our people, your prayers, your counsel and your criticisms. We thank you most profoundly for this resilience of support and understanding, especially at a time that the promotion of cynicism and division have become the preferred praxis of some political circles. On behalf of your government, I wish to put on record our appreciation that most of the people of Kaduna State have chosen to uphold peace and harmony. In return, we assure you that we are determined to end the legacy of violent conflict that has blighted this state.

I wish to assure you all, dear people of Kaduna State, that your hopes in us have been well-placed. Your government has devoted the past two years to the hard work of steadily remaking our state. We have put you, the people, back as the priority of the government. In two years, we have given Education, Health care, and Infrastructure the resources required to enable these sectors work for our people. In doing that, we have shunned political ornamentation, the pretence of service that avoids the significant decisions in favour of relentless patronage. Rather we have anchored change on solid legislative and policy foundations while changing the culture of governance.

I am delighted to inform you that the results of our approach to governance are concrete and firm. In two years, we have nearly doubled primary school enrolment. 29% more of our teenagers are graduating from secondary school and writing WAEC. More women are receiving antenatal care, while hospital deliveries have increased. Hospital attendance has grown while our vaccine coverage is close to 100%. We have increased life chances for babies, improved survival chances for pregnant women and ensured that the light of knowledge can shine on more children. We have sunk boreholes, built roads, provided drugs and jobs. In the things that matter to our people, we have delivered. We saved the state N3.5bn by renegotiating our inherited liabilities. We made sure our budgets are oriented towards capital expenditure and we have delivered the biggest chunk of capital spending in the state’s history.

Our credentials for governance, policy and infrastructure are not contestable. Our duty is to do more. And I promise you that we will. Our desire to serve you competently and honestly will never flag.

We have anchored most of our policies in laws that have been passed by our State House of Assembly to guarantee their sustainability. In delivering change in Kaduna State, our legislators have proven to be committed partners, demonstrating diligence in passing laws. We salute them for their hard work and contributions to strengthening governance.

In two years, the House has helped to improve our budget estimates and passed 21 Executive Bills into law. These include the laws creating our reform institutions: KADGIS, KADIPA, KADFAMA, the Tax Codification and Consolidation law, Pension Reform and legislations on Public Procurement, Public Finance (management and control), Regulation of the Water Sector, Substance Abuse and Treatment, Primary Healthcare under One Roof, Street Begging and Hawking, the Kaduna Masterplan and the Vigilance Service.

Thus, we have complemented strong political will and policy clarity with a solid regulatory framework. We are tackling challenges with a robust focus, while empowering the institutions that are charged to manage those challenges.

We changed governance by announcing from Day One that we will do things differently, that we will put the people first and deliver to them the public services they need and deserve. We pledged to do this by battling waste and fraud, by reducing the cost of running government and by growing Internally-Generated Revenue to free the state from untoward dependence on federal allocation. We got the government out of funding pilgrimage and stopped the practise of governance as bazaar.

We have delivered on each of these. To cut costs, we restructured our ministries. We now have 14, but we inherited 19. We now have 15 commissioners, whereas our predecessor had 24 commissioners. We have been unrelenting in undertaking verification of public service personnel. This has earned us opprobrium in some quarters, but we cannot compromise the necessity to ensure that we have a public service payroll that is reliable. We struck off ghost pensioners, saving the state N1.2bn every year. And we have commenced implementation of the Contributory Pension Scheme.

Despite recruiting 2,250 teachers, 2,550 KASTELEA marshals and 1,245 health workers, our 2016 recurrent expenditures showed a N5 billion reduction in personnel cost to N21.8billion, compared to N26.8bn in 2015. This shows that we have succeeded in reducing that component of the cost of governance.

Our budget performance has tremendously improved. We have made budgeting an exercise in realism. We achieved this by rejecting the lazy incremental budgeting paradigm which just increased budget size without a corresponding improvement in the performance of the capital budget. Beginning in 2016, we adopted Zero-Based Budgeting. And the result is unprecedented. Capital budget performance in 2016 was N59bn, the highest ever in the state.

We are proudly open about our budgets, which are available online. Each of our two full budgets has been subjected to debate and improvement at town-hall meetings before we presented the estimates to our hard-working Kaduna State House of Assembly. And we have aligned the fiscal year with the calendar year, allowing us to implement our annual budget from January to December. Thus, we sign the budget into law before the year in which it will be implemented.

Allied to our budget success are improvements in IGR. In 2016, we raised N23bn as taxes, levies and interest earnings. This is the highest ever in the history of the state. It moves us closer to achieving our target of funding our recurrent expenditures from IGR. Our achievement in this sector is based on the Tax Consolidation and Codification Law, the first in the country, and the establishment of the Kaduna Internal Revenue Service, KADIRS, as the sole collector of all revenues and our banning the collection of cash revenues.

In 2014, we published the Restoration Programme as a clear statement of what our governing priorities would be there. These were in five key areas:

  1. Investing in Education, Health and Social Welfare
  2. Fostering Security
  3. Instituting good governance through a competent and responsive public service
  4. Maintaining and building Infrastructure such as Water Supply, Electricity and Roads to accelerate Economic Growth and create jobs
  5. Promoting Agriculture, Food Security and Land Administration for Wealth creation

In the last two years, we have done as we have promised. We have steadily implemented the Restoration Programme. No segment of our campaign platform has been left untouched.

Education

We have improved access to Education, raising primary school enrolment from 1.1m in July 2015 to 2.1million pupils by September 2016. Even in secondary schools, 29% more students sat for WAEC in 2016 than in 2015. 2016 WAEC results show that Kaduna State is twelfth overall in Nigeria, but number 1 in the north. We have recruited 2,250 teachers of English, Mathematics and the Sciences to boost secondary education.

We renovated 400 of the 4250 public primary schools in the state before we decided to move to a programme of school reconstruction to accommodate the growth in population. We are rebuilding 52 secondary schools. We have fully renovated 27 secondary schools, while work is ongoing in 15 others. Contracts have been awarded for the construction of six science secondary schools, financed by the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB), in Manchock, Hunkuyi, Pambeguwa, Rigachikun, Buruku and Jere. We are feeding our senior secondary boarding students better, spending N300 per day on each student at a cost of N2.5bn every year.

To encourage teachers, we have made it possible for Teachers to rise to Grade Level 17 (Permanent Secretary grade) without having to stop being teachers. We are investing heavily in teacher education. 12,640 teachers have been trained in literacy and numeracy, while 4,225 head teachers have been trained in leadership skills.

We are also implementing the Smart Schools Programmes under which we are supply 10,000 tablets to selected senior secondary schools as a pilot scheme.

I have dwelt on our achievements in Education to show how dutiful we have been about developing human capital. We have broadened access, improved teacher quality and enhanced school facilities. We are emphatic that basic education shall remain free for the first nine years. We abolished levies, provided uniforms and fed 1.5m pupils every school day from January to July 2016. And to further expand access, we have passed a law to abolish street trading and hawking. Our kids should not be trading or begging for food when they should be learning! I call on all our leaders, civil, political and religious, to support the enforcement of this law.

Health

We pledged to improve access to healthcare and to improve health outcomes for our people. We are achieving this with the support of our healthcare workers. Our state won First prize in two editions of the Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (MNCH)Week for testing more than 200,000 pregnant women, which showed HIV/AIDS prevalence of less than 0.3%. We are implementing free healthcare for children under five, pregnant women and the elderly, as we promised. Recently, our state cabinet agreed to provide cash cover for the treatment of elderly diabetics and hypertensives, starting from age 70.

But we are emphasizing the preventive side of healthcare too. Investments in cold stores have ensured that we are near 100% in vaccine coverage for polio and other childhood diseases. Our partnership with GE to rehabilitate and equip 255 PHC is ongoing. Already, 34 PHCs in 18 LGAs have been equipped with Solar power panels, in partnership with DFID.

Primary Health Care is now under one roof, with the State Primary Healthcare Development Agency exercising regulatory and administrative control, with backing legislation, to improve health outcomes. This will be further strengthened by the tripartite agreement on strengthening primary health care we signed with Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and DFID. This also covers Routine Immunisation.

Your government has secured accreditation for Barau Dikko Hospital as a teaching hospital. The Doka hospital on the Abuja-Kaduna Road is being transformed into a trauma centre. We are pursuing the completion of the 300-bed specialist hospital at the Millennium City.

We have administered 1.3 million doses of Vitamin A to children, distributed 271,262 long-lasting insecticidal nets and provided 57,320 rapid diagnostic test kits and anti-malaria drugs to 391 health facilities in 23 LGAs. The Kaduna State Ambulance Service has purchased three additional ambulances that were sent to Kwoi, Ikara and Gwamna Awan Hospital in Kakuri. We also administer an Emergency Transport System that has taken over 600 pregnant women in labour to health facilities, free of charge. This programme is in collaboration with MNCH 2 and NURTW and covers all the 23 LGAs.

Our Contributory Health Insurance Scheme is awaiting passage by the legislature.

On infrastructure, we are steadily hitting our target. As you are aware, we have broken the jinx that has held back the Zaria Water project. Two days ago, we commissioned the 150 million litres per day Water Treatment plant. After 2010, the Zaria Water project became an abandoned project, with contractors being owed N3.8bn. But we promised our people that we will deliver the project as we campaigned for votes in 2014 and 2015. We settled the N3.8bn debt owed the contractors and mobilised them to restart work. The people of Zaria and Sabon-Gari can feel the impact of what we have done. Our efforts are now directed to completing the infrastructure of pipelines and reservoirs that will ensure that the water flows in all the eight local governments the project was designed for. Across the state, we are retrofitting and rehabilitating water works in 12 locations, including Manchock, Kafanchan, Saminaka, Birnin-Gwari, Kachia and Kaduna metropolis.

We are fixing 414km of intracity roads across the state, while over 2500 solar street lights have been installed. We saved N1.1bn by renegotiating the Kawo-Lugard Hall Roundabout road expansion.

We are providing transformers for rural and urban communities, while we are bringing the potentials of solar electricity to power some of our health centres and schools.

Agriculture and Land Administration

In Agriculture, we have encouraged our farmers through several initiatives. They know they have a ready route to market, and have the assurance of a price support programme. We eliminated fertiliser subsidy, but still got 50,000 tons of fertilizer to our farmers in 2016 at N4000 per bag. We accomplished this by refusing to award fertiliser contracts, and by convincing a private company to sell fertiliser directly to farmers.

Our Land Administration reforms have advanced significantly. We have established the Kaduna Geographic Information Service (KADGIS) which is digitizing the land registry. We have commenced the recertification programme to convert old, unreliable paper Certificates of Occupancy into digital titles. We have launched the systematic land titling and registration to give opportunity to our farmers and other untitled land owners to get valid title at a fee of N5000. The security of title, the transparency of land searches and the ability to transact in land without undue hassles are vital to running a modern economy.

Security

We continue to support our security agencies. We have provided 107 vehicles, 50 motorcycles and bullet proof vests. Our Comprehensive Security architecture is already training 34 Operation Yaki personnel to operate the security drones we are acquiring, even as we improve the capacity of security agencies for electronic surveillance.

We have committed funds for security operations to stabilise the situation in parts of southern Kaduna and against banditry, cattle rustling and kidnapping. The situation in southern Kaduna has improved and has enabled us to lift the curfews that were imposed in three local government areas. But we expect a further consolidation of the peace before we risk opening some tertiary institutions in the area.

Communities and their leaders should appreciate the consequences of bigotry, violence and hateful rhetoric, and learn to live in peace so that social services can be provided to all citizens.

Public Service

As you are aware, we launched a programme to reform and revitalise our Public Service. Part of the goal is to inject youth, as well as modern tools and processes into the system. We have opened a job portal on our state website for interested persons to upload their details.

Investments

We have established the credentials of Kaduna State as an investment magnet. Through our policies and laws, we have launched Kaduna into the global economy, making our state an investment destination of choice. In the Kaduna Investment Promotion Agency (KADIPA), we have a one-stop shop for investors. Its investment pipeline was brilliantly showcased at KADinvest, and it has attracted USD350m in investments to the state.

The two editions of KADInvest: have firmly put Kaduna on the investment map. Our Ease of Doing Business charter was unveiled at KADInvest 2.0, held in April 2017. It is the conclusion of the work of the Ease of Doing Business Committee we set up on the final day of the first KADInvest. The efforts to improve our state competitiveness have earned us the BusinessDay Award as the 2017 Best State in Ease of Doing Business

Investments by Olam, Vicampro and Flour Mills in our agriculture sector are leveraging on the conditions we have created. The mining sector is energised by the increased tempo of exploration activities that we have encouraged for minerals such as Gold, Tin and Dimension Stones. The nickel find in the Dangoma area has been reconfirmed for quality and abundance. Across our mining sites, we are providing services and infrastructure such as roads, health centres, schools, water and electricity where they do not exist.

At the recent KADInvest, we were able to commission part of our Affordable Housing Scheme, an ICT hub and segments of the Olam project. The USD 150m Olam Poultry and Feedmill project will employ well over 300,000 farmers and 10,000 veterinary doctors, distributors and other citizens of the state will be commissioned in September 2017, by God’s Grace, by President Muhammadu Buhari.

Jobs

  • We have created many direct jobs:
    • 2,250 Teachers of English, Mathematics and the Sciences
    • 2,255 marshals for the Kaduna Traffic Law Enforcement Agency (KASTELEA)
    • 1,245 professional health workers
    • 20 State Counsels
    • Through our infrastructure upgrade programmes, we have created jobs for artisans and labourers, and sellers of building materials.
  • But our private sector investments are already proving their capacity for job creation:
    • Olam: 10, 000 jobs
    • Vicampro: 30,000 jobs
    • Mahindra Tractors: 2,000
  • In addition to these, we are providing intervention funds for Small and Medium Enterprises, especially with the Bank of Industry and the Bank of Agriculture.
  • We are providing layers of training for our youth to increase their capacity for job-creation and employability:
    • Our graduate entrepreneurs can acquire much needed business skills and access to finance through the KADSTEP, the Kaduna Start-up Entrepreneurship Programme.
    • Young people are being given training in construction industry trades through KADAT, the Kaduna Artisan Training Academy.
    • We are also funding practical training for tradesmen in electrical technology and electronics through the Kaduna Electrical, Electronics and Energy Academy(KADEEEA)

But everything we have accomplished so far has been based on establishing solid foundations for Governance. I am happy to report the following highlights of our governance agenda:

  • “B” Credit Rating with Stable Outlook: In November 2016, Fitch Ratings assigned Kaduna State a long-term foreign and local currency Issuer Default Ratings (IDRs) of “B” and a National long-term rating of A+(nga) with stable outlooks. We have retained this “B” credit rating in 2017.

  • First government in Nigeria to complete Implementation of Treasury Single Account: Within a six-week period in 2015, Kaduna State implemented TSA, closing 470 bank accounts belonging to various agencies of government and transferring their balances of almost N25bn to the TSA at the Central Bank.
    • The Kaduna State TSA Operations Manual was launched in September 2016, making it the first state in Nigeria to release an Operations Manual since the adoption of the TSA policy

We steadily improved our capacity to acquire the data for planning through our Data Revolution. The Kaduna State Bureau of Statistics is now considered among the best of its kind in the country, and for good reason. Through its work, we have done a state GDP survey and household surveys that enable us to measure how we are improving key social indices compared with the baseline.

Next steps

As we move into the second-half of our four –year tenure, we shall be initiating the BRT scheme, completing more water projects, building and equipping more schools, strengthening our health sector, building more modern markets and neighbourhood centres and activating more of the investment projects in our pipeline. We have presented the consultation document on our Infrastructure Masterplan that solidifies where we want to take Kaduna over the next three decades with investments in roads and bridges, water and energy across the state.

We have also launched the Kaduna Residency Card programme to enable know who lives in Kaduna, acquire the relevant data for planning and be able to use that data to foster development and planning. I urge all residents of Kaduna State to support this programme by registering.

During our recent trip to China, we made progress with our partners on our dream of building a 50,000 barrels per day refinery in Kaduna, to process crude oil to be piped from Niger Republic, with an associated 80-100MW power plant. There is much to look forward to achieving for our people.

On this day, as we celebrate democracy, our mid-term and the third day of Ramadan, we seek to also discharge our obligation to demonstrate mercy. Accordingly, in exercise of the powers conferred on me by law, I have acted on the recommendations of the state committee on the prerogative of mercy, chaired by our Attorney-General, in respect of 24 prisoners. Release orders have been signed for 23 convicts, including 15 who have three years or less to complete their terms. Four have been pardoned for good behaviour, two are released on grounds of age and one person serving life is pardoned, after 25 years in jail. One convict who has spent 23 years on death row is released, while the death sentence of one convict has been commuted to life in prison.

As we observe Democracy Day, I call on the people of Kaduna State to continue to pray for the good health and safe return of our leader, President Muhammadu Buhari. Across our diverse faiths, I humbly request that we pray in unison for peace in land, that harmony will replace strife in the places of conflict and that we all can rediscover, uphold and protect a common humanity.

In two years, we can proudly say that much has been done, but more remains. Let us do it together. Let us remain united, respecting each other, celebrating our diversity and shunning all those who seek to prosper by setting us asunder. Let us not waver in making Kaduna great again.

Happy Democracy Day.

Nasir Ahmad El-Rufai

Governor of Kaduna State

29th May 2017

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