Nigeria 2019:I am not afraid of free and fair election; Buhari maintains

By Olayinka Ajayi

Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari has said that as a beneficiary of free and fair elections, he is not afraid of a credible process in 2019.

To this effect, the president reaffirmed his commitment to making sure that the 2019 polls, under his watch, will be free, fair and credible.
Speaking at an interactive session with members of the Nigerian community in Beijing China, the president pledged that Nigerians eligible to vote in the next general elections will be allowed to freely elect candidates of their choice.
‘‘I have no fear about free and fair elections because that is what brought me to the present position. I know what I went through and very few Nigerians could boast of trying four times [contesting for the presidency].

‘‘Those interested in participating in the elections must get their PVCs, register in their constituency and elect anybody of their choice across ethnicity and religion.

‘‘The Nigerian police, law enforcement agencies and INEC must respect the people to express their wishes,’’ he said.

Citing recent elections in Bauchi, Katsina and Kogi states, the president said the country had made progress relative to elections conducted in the past years.

On security issues, the president reaffirmed that his government has succeeded in curtailing Boko Haram insurgents in the country, adding that the terrorist group no longer controls any part of the country.

He attributed the success to operations of security agencies deployed to counter insurgency in the North-eastern part of the country. ‘‘You will all recall that we contested the last election basically on three issues, which included security, especially in the North-east.

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