There have been series of allegations especially by the opposition parties in the country that the coming elections may not be free and fair under the current administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.
However, President Buhari assured the European Union Observer Mission (EOM) to Nigeria, that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) would conduct credible poll in the general elections beginning from February 16. Buhari, who expressed satisfaction at the electoral umpire’s preparations towards the elections spoke when he received the EOM, led by the Chief Observer and member of the European Parliament, Maria Arena, at the State House.
The president said he based his confidence on a presentation by the INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, while briefing the National Council of State that met at the Council Chamber.
According to him: “I am happy and impressed with the briefing he gave. I hope that the confidence he exuded and the intellect he brought to bear on the report will be justified at the end of the day.”
The president told the EU delegation that Nigeria had grown its electoral system incrementally, getting better year after year. “Having participated in elections four times in the past, I would say that since 2015, technology has helped the credibility of our elections,” he said. The president said that Nigeria with over 250 cultural groups across religions and ethnic groups, with each group canvassing for identity and primacy in the affairs of the nation, “patriotism demands that we identify the nation’s best interest and go with it.”
He stressed that the governing All Progressives Congress (APC) had the good sense of identifying the national interest to include security, peace and stability, improved economy, jobs creation and the campaign against corruption, noting that the party was not wrong in 2015, and is not wrong going into the election this year with the same issues in its campaigns.
A statement by Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, said the President thanked the delegation for taking interest in Nigeria’s elections, and in the affairs of the nation generally.
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