Ban calls on all Nigerians to ‘vote in large numbers’ ahead of Saturday’s elections

President Goodluck Jonathan (right) and Gen. Muhammadu Buhari, the two main presidential candidates in the 28 March 2015 elections in Nigeria. Photo: UNDP Nigeria

27 March 2015 – On the eve of presidential and parliamentary elections in Nigeria, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has called on all Nigerians to exercise their civic responsibility by going to the polls to vote in large numbers.

In a statement released by his spokesperson’s office, the UN chief commended progress made by Nigeria’s Independent National Electoral Commission in the preparation for the elections.

“The Secretary-General welcomes the joint statement signed under the auspices of the National Peace Committee and issued yesterday by President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan and Retired Major General Muhammadu Buhari, in which they renewed their pledge for peaceful free, fair and credible elections,” the statement said.

Mr. Ban commended both parties for their commitment to respect the outcome of the elections and called on the candidates and their supporters to resolve disputes that may arise from the electoral process through peaceful means.

“The success of the polls is the responsibility of all Nigerian actors: the electoral authorities, security agencies, political parties, candidates, religious leaders, civil society and voters,” Mr. Ban said in the statement.

The Secretary-General’s statement also expressed hope that tomorrow’s elections will be transparent, inclusive, and peaceful. The relevant national authorities must be accountable to the Nigerian people to ensure that this is the case.

“The international community has high expectations that Nigeria will provide leadership in setting a high standard for this election,” it added.


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