Nigeria has strong democratic history of peaceful transition of power – UN

By Cecilia Ologunagba

UN Spokesperson, Stephanie Dujarric has said that Nigeria has a very strong and proud democratic history of peaceful transition of power in recent years.

Feilding questions on if the UN technical support to INEC to use technology to manage the elections was fruitful, Dujarric told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in New York, that the support yielded some results.

“Yes, I mentioned to you earlier, that United National Development Programme (UNDP), offered technical support to Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC). We are not an observer on these elections.

“There’s not for the UN to say Yes or No on how the elections were run. I think, Nigeria has a very strong and proud democratic history of peaceful transition of power in recent years. There is a process ongoing.

“It is important at this point in any election, in any country, and we’ve seen it in the North, we’ve seen it in the South and East and West, we’ve seen issues of great tension following elections when people didn’t accept the results.

“It is important that all stakeholders work for the better, for the stability of the country and use existing legal and constitutional channels to challenge, if they so wish, any election results,’’ the spokesperson said.

Earlier, he told NAN thatbthe UN system had continued to provide electoral assistance to national electoral authorities and support to a non-governmental network of organisations focusing on capacity building, promoting transparency and the inclusion of youth and women.

“Included in this support to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has been technical support mainly through United National Development Programme (UNDP), to improve the process and use of technology in preparing for and managing the election.’’

In addition, the spokesperson said he had seen reports that a number of the other candidates would contest, “if I read those reports properly”.

“What is important is that as in any election, any… that if any candidate or group of candidates have an issue with the results that they go through the established legal and constitutional channels to work out their challenges.

“And it is very important for everyone to remain calm as that process or these processes play out,’’ he said.

The Nigeria’s electoral commission, INEC on Wednesday declared Sen. Bola Tinubu as the winner of the 2023 presidential election.

A total of 18 presidential candidates contested the election held across the 36 states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja, on Saturday.

The INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, announced that Tinubu, a former Lagos State governor and the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), won the election with the majority of votes cast across Nigeria.

The APC candidate polled 8,794,726 votes to defeat fellow contenders – Atiku Abubakar of the opposition People’s Democratic Party (PDP) who polled 6,984,520 votes, Labour Party’s Peter Obi had 6,101,533 votes to come third and candidate of the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP) Rabiu Kwankwaso with 1,496,687 votes.

Of the 36 states and FCT, Tinubu, Obi and Atiku won 12 states each while Kwankwaso won only Kano State.

The 12 states won by Tinubu are Ogun, Oyo, Osun, Kwara, Benue, Rivers, Borno, Zamfara, Jigawa, Ondo, Kogi and Niger.

Atiku of the PDP won Taraba, Osun, Akwa Ibom, Adamawa, Kaduna, Sokoto, Yobe, Bayelsa, Kebbi, Bauchi, Gombe and Katsina States.

Obi won the following states of Ebonyi, Enugu, Imo, Anambra, Abia, Delta, Edo, FCT, Plateau, Nasarawa, Lagos and Cross River. (NAN)