In the recently concluded presidential election, Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari pleaded with the losers not to instigate bloodshed.
Any contender who is unhappy with the Independent National Electoral Commission’s (INEC) announced results, he said, should seek judicial recourse.
After Bola Amed Tinubu was named the winner of the election held on Saturday, President Buhari posted this on Wednesday.
Opposition groups have since contested Mr. Tinubu’s victory and asked for a new election.
However, Mr. Buhari asserts that despite flaws and difficulties with the computerized transfer of the results, “there is no doubt the people’s decision has been rendered in the results we look at today”.
He said it might be challenging for the unsuccessful contestants to accept the outcome announced by INEC.
Therefore, if they [the defeated candidates] feel it is essential to contest the conclusion of the results, they should do so without resorting to violence and in accordance with the laws that regulate elections in the nation.
“Votes and those that cast them cannot be taken for granted. Each must be earned. Competition is good for our democracy.
“That is not to say the exercise was without fault. For instance, there were technical problems with the electronic transmission of the results. Of course, there will be areas that need work to bring further transparency and credibility to the voting procedure.
“If they cannot, then we must conclude that the election was indeed the people’s will – no matter how hard that may be for the losers to accept. If they feel the need to challenge, please take it to the courts, not to the streets”, President Buhari said.
President Buhari added that “none of the issues registered represent a challenge to the freeness and fairness of the elections.
“I know some politicians and candidates may not agree with this view. That too is fine. If any candidate believes they can prove the fraud they claim is committed against them, then bring forward the evidence”, President Buhari stated.
All candidates were urged by the departing president to keep in mind the peace accord that was inked prior to the election.
He clarified that inciting unrest as a consequence of the election serves only one’s own interests and is not in the best interests of the community.
In addition, Mr. Buhari said that INEC’s legitimacy should not be questioned because the people have already selected their leader.
“To take to the streets implies they are not acting in the best interests of the populace, but rather to incite, place people in danger, and pursue only their own, narrow interests.
“After the inevitable degree of division that follows every election, it is now time to unite and take responsibility.
I urge all contenders to keep in mind the peace commitment they made just before the election.
Buhari additionally advised undermining INEC’s trustworthiness.
Let’s now advance collectively. The conversation is over.
Buhari prayed for God to reward the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Since then, President Muhammadu Buhari has praised Bola Tinubu and declared that he is the ideal candidate for the position.