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Following the conduct of the presidential, governorship and legislative elections, the President Muhammadu Buhari ,on Tuesday, in Abuja said he is proud of the Nigerian electorate who have realized their power and “ultimately decided who won or lost.”
However, he expressed sadness that some candidates, especially those of the All Progressives Congress, lost their bid.
“I am unhappy that some candidates lost in the election. But I am inspired by the fact that voters were able to make their own decision, to decide who won and who lost,” Buhari told the outgoing United States Ambassador to Nigeria, Mary Beth Leonard, at the State House, Abuja.
Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, disclosed this in a statement he signed on Tuesday titled ‘Recent elections proof of nation’s voter vibrancy, maturity, says President Buhari.’
It was reported that the February 25 and March 18 elections, were marred by varying degrees of irregularities and violence which drew criticism from large sections of the electorate and the international community.
Some of the opposition parties have also called for the cancellation of results and a fresh re-run, blaming the Independent National Electoral Commission for failing to transmit results electronically.
Nonetheless, Buhari said he was “completely satisfied” with his own role in the election process staying above it, without meddling or interfering
He lauded Nigerians for their “remarkable passion towards democracy exhibited through the choices they made in the presidential, National Assembly and the subsequent governorship and state Houses of Assembly elections” saying “Nigeria’s democracy has truly matured.”
According to him, “People are realizing their power. Given the chance of a free and fair vote, nobody can tell them what to do.
“I am unhappy that some candidates lost in the election. But I am inspired by the fact that voters were able to make their own decision, to decide who won and who lost.
“With the currency change, there was no money to spread around but even then, I told voters to take the money and vote according to their consciences.”