June 12 Day: Nigeria is safe, says minister

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NIGERIA is safe and there is no cause for alarm, Information, Culture & Tourism Minister Lai Mohammed has declared.

The declaration came yesterday despite uncovering an alleged plot to disrupt the inauguration of President Muhammadu Buhari for second term on May 29.

He said world leaders, who will attend the maiden June 12 Democracy Day, have nothing to fear.

Mohammed, who made the declaration at a news conference in Abuja, said security agencies were on top of the recent security alarm.

He, however, emphasized that the presidential inauguration on May 29, would be a low-key event in order to save cost.

Muhammed said: “On the invitation of world presidents to the presidential inauguration, I said leaders will be invited instead to the observance of Democracy Day and that invitations have since been sent out.

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“Nigeria is safe and sound for world leaders to attend the celebration. I will not tell you the measures taken for safety. I have no reason to doubt the credibility of the security alarm raised by security agencies. There is no cause for alarm as the security agencies are on top of the matter.”

According to him, the swearing-in of the President and the Vice President at the Eagle Square would be followed by a State Banquet at the State House.

Mohammed noted that the event marking the June 12 Democracy Day would start on June 7 with a historical exhibition in arts, pictures and immersive environment, and would run through June 12.

On the inauguration activities that began with yesterday’s news conference, the minister said: “This will be followed on Tuesday by the commencement of three-day national youth entrepreneurship empowerment summit in Abuja.

“The Federal Executive Council valedictory session will be held at the council chambers, state house in Abuja on Wednesday, May 22, 2019 while a special Jumat lecture and prayer will be held on Friday at the National Mosque.

“The first lady interaction with women will hold on Saturday while a special interdenominational church service is slated for Sunday May 26, 2019 at the National Christian Centre, Abuja.

“On May 27, 2019, Mr President will give a Children’s Day broadcast that will be followed later in the day by children variety party. The swearing in of the president and vice president is slated for May 29, 2019 at the Eagle Square to be followed by a state banquet at the evening of the same day.”

The minister added that Democracy Day would also kick off on June 7 with the exhibition in arts and pictures and that it would be followed by a youth concert, creative industry and entertainment night on June 9, 2019.

He said: “On June 10, 2019, there will be secondary school exhibition and panel discussion in Abuja while three events will feature on June 11.

“They are PMB oratorical contest, anti-corruption summit and first ladies commissioning programme in Yola, Adamawa State.

“The June 12 will start with a parade at Eagle Square and Democracy Day programme will wrap up with a dinner at gala night at the state house conference centre.”

Other ministers at the briefing included: Mohammed Adamu (Education); Geoffrey Onyema (Foreign Affairs) and Bawa Buhari (Solid Minerals) as well as permanent secretaries Gabriel Aduda, Olusegun Adekunle and Jalab Arabi.

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