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HomePoliticsAt Chatham House, Tinubu canvasses free, fair elections, condemns electoral violence

At Chatham House, Tinubu canvasses free, fair elections, condemns electoral violence

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The Presidential Candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC),  Bola Ahmed Tinubu has said that the 2023 presidential election should be determined by voters making their choice freely rather than the domineering intimidation of the troublesome few.

Speaking on Monday at the Chatham House in London, Tinubu also condemned all forms of electoral violence and intimidation ahead of the 2023 elections.

He said having spent most of his career in the opposition, he had long fought against electoral malpractice and any attempts to extinguish the legitimate choice of voters, while assuring that he would continue to do so.

The former Lagos state governor in a statement issued Monday in London and signed by Tunde Rahman was of the opinion that  the sovereign will of the people decides the path of the nation.

The APC Presidential candidate said Nigeria would epitomise values of democracy during elections anywhere in Africa, by ensuring that democratic ideals are followed and all forms of electoral violence will be rejected, allowing only the will of the people to prevail.

“Every election, wherever it is held, is important to the people or entity directly concerned. It is also important to the global democracy community as well.

“Equally, there are also countries whose elections, on account of their weight and influence, carry wider implications way beyond their immediate geographical boundaries. Nigeria is one of such countries.

“I stand firmly against all forms of electoral violence and intimidation.  Having spent most of my career in the political opposition, I have long fought against electoral malpractice and any attempts to extinguish the legitimate choice of voters.  I will continue to do so.

READ ALSO: Atiku in Lagos, throws jab at Tinubu, says state rules by single family since 1999

“And I urge all my fellow contestants in this election to do the same.  Let the sovereign will of the people decide the path of our nation.  And let this election be determined by voters making their choice freely rather than the domineering intimidation of the troublesome few.

“For one, as Africa’s most populous country and the continent’s largest economy, it is generally acknowledged that the fortunes of the African continent and indeed the Black race is tied directly to the health of Nigeria.

“Also the Nigerian elections of 2023 are coming up at a time when the country’s immediate geographical neighbourhood of West and Central Africa is undergoing serious political turmoil that has manifested itself in the incursion of the military to power in a number of countries.

“In spite of the legitimate concerns being expressed by observers, Nigerians are resolutely committed to democracy, regardless of their political differences,” Tinubu was quoted as saying.

Tinubu explained that Nigeria shares direct land borders with four sister African countries with whose peoples Nigerians also share historical and cultural affinities.

He said this effectively means that the relationship between Nigeria and its immediate neighbours is much more than just a geographical expression.

“To be fully secure at home, Nigeria has always believed it must be the brothers’ keeper. It was out of this understanding that Africa’s premier regional economic community, ECOWAS, was established in 1975.

“Uniquely, ECOWAS had embedded in its mandate, the promotion of regional economic integration as a good in its own right and in addition undertook sub-regional peace and security.

“I am convinced, as I am sure most of us are, that the broad principles that enabled successive Nigerian governments to interface development and security, and establish an organic link between national security and economic development with regional peace and prosperity is both impeccable and remains relevant. It is an approach which I commit myself to upholding and advancing,” he said.

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