BY ABDULGAFAR OLADIMEJI, Kano
Millions of Kano residents and sympathizers of the All Progressive Congress (APC) Wednesday, trooped into the streets to usher president Muhammadu Buhari into the ancient city, to mark a the flag off of his two days presidential visit to the state.
The aircraft conveying the president, at about 10:27 am touched down at Malam Aminu Kano International Airport (MAKIA) the jet titled,Air Force One with registration number 5N-FGT.
President Buhari said , insurgents and their illicit activities have been subdued paving way for businesses to thrive.
Buhari who acknowledged cheers from thousands , who kept renting the air with the shout of “ sai baba” dressed in white traditional house gown, drove in a motorcade that travelled through Asthon road, to Sani Marshal road, via Murtala Mohammed way had to contend with a mammoth crowd that constitutes youths, aged, children, male and female, disrupted traffic flow to have a glimpse at the president to pay homage.
The crowd waved banners with various inscriptions bearing messages that welcomed president Buhari to Kano, and herald his achievements in office.
As early as 7:am, security operatives were situated at strategic locations to keep vigil.
In his address, Buhari stated that prior to the coming of his administration, commercial activities in Kano and various parts of Nigeria had suffered mass loss owing to the activities of insurgents and other related criminal activities, he said, today, commercial activities in the ancient city has recorded an enviable boost, due to the deflation of insurgent activities by his government.
Buhari recalled that, All Progressive Congress, (APC) during the 2015 electioneering campaign vowed to make available accessible and quality health services, he said, the pledges are been fulfilled by elected APC governments at all strata.
He stated that, APC was founded to uplift and change the lives of Nigerians for the better, the vow was to bring change to every Nigerian, this is daily been fulfilled, president Buhari said.
President Buhari note that, leaders require spiritual guidance and the political will to deliver on their promises to the electorate, he prayed God to grant those assigned to public assignments the wisdom to discharge their duties in favor of the down trodden masses within the principles of public good.
The president who visited Kano Emirate council as his first port of call, during the visit, said his stoppage at the palace is to pay homage to the Kano royal court, expressing the need to accord respect and honor to traditional institutions, he thanked Emir Sanusi II for the royal reception organized and accorded to him and members of his entourage.
President Buhari proceed to Kurmawa Central prison nearby to the Kano Emir’s palace tp superintend the release of 500 prison inmates, who were convicted for compoundable offences nor on Awaiting Trial Moment(ATM).
The president who extended the prerogative of mercy to the inmates in accordance to constitutional provisions donated an undisclosed cash sum for useage to rehabilitee the beneficiaries of the constitutional gesture.
Prominent among the functions to be executed by the president during the two days visit is the commissioning of a completed projects, which comprises of a specialist hospital located in Giginyu quarters, Kano, now renamed Muhammadu Buhari Specialist Hospital, Zoo road Peadiatric Hospital, Panshekara/Madobi Under pass, CBN quarters road and Bukavu barrack underpass, which is under construction.
Buhari, while commissioning, the state of the art Muhammadu Buhari specialist hospital yesterday (Wednesday)described the completion of the hospital as a delivery of one the cardinal campaign promises made by the ruling APC government.
The hospital he said is one of its kind in the region, urging other governors to emulate governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, he said strived and has touched the lives of the people by installing a state of the art health facility in Kano and Northern region.
President Buhari who is in Kano to commission Muhammadu Buhari Specialist Hospital, Zoo road Pediatric Hospital, Panshekara/Madobi Under pass, CBN quarters road and inspect works at the Bukavu barrack underpass, which is under construction expressed the optimism that his administration would continue to secure lives and properties and implement policies that will positively impact on the lives of the populace.
Emir of Kano, Mallam Lamido Sanusi Lamido, who earlier received the president at his royal court, said Kano emirate council will continue counsel the administration of president Buhari, on how best to render meaningful services to Nigerians.
The monarch said, Kano is and will always remain home to the visiting president, he recalled that in previous elections prior to the emergence of president Buhari in the 2015 polls, Kano electorate had casted their votes for president Buhari and had always perceived him as their elected president, even when the overall results went contrary.
Also earlier in his remark at the Muhammadu Buhari Specialist Hospital, Kano state governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje disclosed that, the state government inherited the hospital uncompleted at 30 percent stage, stating that, the sum of N4.3 billion was expended on the completion of the hospital facility, including the securing of state of the art medical gadgets for the facility.
According to him, the motive behind the completion of the hospital is to provide health services equivalent to those that could be obtained in medically advanced climes.
“For effective management of the special health facility, an advisory committee has been set up to advise the state government on best management practices that will ensure smooth management and provision of serves by the hospital
Ganduje further revealed that, the sum of N3.7 billion was invested toward the completion of Zaria road pediatric hospital, adding that the physical infrastructure and medical equipments procured and installed were also in tandem with best global practice.
Our correspondent reports that, president Buhari would on, second day of the visit, conduct town hall meetings with political groups, stakeholders in the commercial sector, visit a private owned rice facility before departing Kano, Thursday evening.
Prominent among members of the Federal Executive Council that accompanied president Buhari to Kano are, minister of defence, Munir Dan Ali, minister of interior, Abdulrahman Danbazau, minister of state for aviation Hadi Serika and special aide attached to president Buhari.