President Muhammadu Buhari has called on Nigerians to come out and vote freely, bearing in mind that February 16th, the date of the Presidential and National Assembly elections, is more than making a choice between political parties.
“February 16th is all about a choice. But it is more than a choice between APC and the opposition. It is a choice about you, it is a choice between going back or keeping the momentum of change,” the President said in a national broadcast Thursday.
President Buhari, who signed a peace accord along with other Presidential candidates on Wednesday, promised to ensure that Nigerians vote in a peaceful atmosphere.
He said, “On Saturday, February 16, 2019, you will, once again, be called upon to choose the leaders who will pilot the affairs of our great nation for the next four years. This is a constitutional right which should be freely exercised by all eligible voters.
“I wish therefore to start by assuring all Nigerians that this Government will do its very best to ensure that the 2019 elections take place in a secure and peaceful atmosphere.
“It was indeed such free, fair and peaceful elections that made it possible for our Government to emerge, despite the fact that we were contesting against a long-standing incumbent party.
“And as your president and a fellow Nigerian, I ask that you come out and queue to fulfill this important obligation you have to yourselves and your fellow citizens – and to our common future.
“Let me at this point, reaffirm the commitment of the Federal Government to the conduct of free and fair elections in a safe and peaceful atmosphere. Just yesterday, I signed the Peace Accord alongside 72 other presidential candidates.
“I want to assure all Nigerians, the diplomatic community and all foreign election observers of their safety and full protection. Any comments or threats of intimidation from any source do not represent the position of the Federal Government of Nigeria.”
President Buhari, who used the broadcast to defend the performance of his administration, also sought the support of Nigerians for his re-election bid.
He said, “In making your choice this time, please ask yourself whether, and in what ways, others will do anything different to address the issues of agriculture, infrastructure, security, good governance and fighting corruption.
“If they are only hoping to do what we are already doing successfully, we are clearly your preferred choice.
“Think carefully and choose wisely. This time, it is a choice about consolidating on growth for jobs and prosperity.”