ECOWAS EXPRESSES SOLIDARITY WITH NIGERIA, URGES PEACEFUL, CREDIBLE ELECTIONS
The ECOWAS Commission has reaffirmed its solidarity with Nigeria and called for free, fair, violence-free and credible general elections in the country this year.
This was the recurring theme of the message by the Commission’s delegation led by its President Kadré Desire Ouédraogo, during separate meetings with key Nigerian political stakeholders including President Goodluck Jonathan, the presidential candidate of the ruling People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in the postponed March/April elections, the opposition flag bearer Gen. Mohammed Buhari (Rtd) of the All Peoples Congress (APC) and Chairman of the Independent Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Athahiru Jega.
Speaking after an audience with President Jonathan at the Presidential Villa on 16th February 2015, the ECOWAS chief said the organization will accompany Nigeria, an important country in the region and Africa, through a successful electoral process and in strengthening and deepening democracy on the continent.
He also stressed the need for a peaceful electoral process and respect for the country’s Constitution, while appealing to the political parties, politicians and their supporters to play by the rule.
During separate meetings with Gen. Buhari and Prof Jega on 18th February, President Ouédraogo also shared the observations of the ECOWAS Long-term Observation Mission (LTEOM) deployed to different Nigerian geopolitical zones before the national elections originally scheduled to start on 14th February were shifted to March 28 and April 11.
The INEC Chairman promised to take on board the observations and recommendations of the regional Long-term Election Observation Mission, towards ensuring free, fair, peaceful and credible general elections in Nigeria.
The Long-term observers are part of an enlarged 250-member Election Observation Mission (EOM) being deployed by ECOWAS to monitor the Nigerian polls within the context of the regional Protocol on Democracy and Good Governance for support to Member States organizing elections.
The ECOWAS Commission’s delegation on the visits included the Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace and Security, Mrs. Salamatu Hussaini Sulaiman, Director of Political Affairs, Dr. Remi Ajibewa and Head of the Electoral Assistance Division, Mr. Francis Oke.
Directorate of Communication