In preparation for the 2023 general elections, president Muhammadu Buhari, has promised Nigerians and the international community of free and fair elections in 2023 general elections, and peaceful transfer of power.
He reportedly disclosed this at Virtual Summit for Democracy organised by President Joe Biden of the United States.
According to the President, “As we countdown to our next general elections in 2023, we remain committed to putting in place and strengthening all necessary mechanisms to ensure that Nigeria will not only record another peaceful transfer of power to an elected democratic government but will also ensure that the elections are conducted in a free, fair and transparent manner.”
He added that, “This unwholesome trend, sometimes in reaction to unilateral amendments of constitutions by some leaders, must not be tolerated by the international community. Nigeria fully supports the efforts by ECOWAS to address this growing challenge and appreciates the support of both the African Union and the United Nations.”
Buhari made it known that, ” Nigeria continues to face security challenges that pose a threat to democracy,” calling “on global partners to support our efforts in tackling insurgency and terrorism.’’
He noted that, “I am proud to state that Nigeria has had over two decades of uninterrupted democratic governance and has unequivocally remained committed to upholding the core values and principles of democracy.”
He disclosed that, “Since assuming office in 2015, we have been able to introduce mechanisms to ensure free, fair and credible elections. We have strengthened our key anti-corruption agencies in collaboration with international partners and have undertaken several anti-corruption measures and initiatives.”
The President continued that, “As you are aware, democracy has remained the most popular and universally recognised way of governance thus far. It is one governance system that guarantees freedom of speech, rule of law, respect for human rights and inclusiveness in governance. It also promotes social justice, economic and social development and national and global peace.”
He restated that, “However, in spite of these laudable qualities, more is required from us as members of democratic societies, particularly in ensuring that democratic institutions and processes are strengthened, particularly during this period of a global pandemic which has threatened social cohesion in most democracies.”
Be maintained that, “We, therefore, must remain resolute and enhance cooperation, so that together, we build back better democratic institutions and sustainable democratic values.”
The president while commenting on the devastating effect of the Covid-19 pandemic on elections, he stated that, “Nevertheless, we have witnessed the resilience of democratic institutions in many countries that have held free, fair and transparent democratic elections under very challenging conditions.’’