President Muhammadu Buhari has urged Nigerians to give democracy the chance to flourish in the country as it’s not the “easiest thing to achieve and maintain”.
The president said this during a national broadcast in the early hours of Friday, February 22, 2019, ahead of the general elections set to commence with the Presidential and National Assembly elections on Saturday, February 23.
The president said that while democracy is the most beneficial way to select leaders, it requires a great deal of patience, tolerance, compassion, diligence, wisdom and hope to maintain. He appealed to Nigerians to continue to display these traits.
He said, “Tomorrow, we affirm that Nigeria stands as a democracy and that no worldly hand can deter us from this wise and fitting path we have chosen for ourselves.
“While democracy is the most beneficial way to select a nation’s leaders, it is far from the easiest thing to achieve and maintain.
“It requires a combination of patience, tolerance, compassion, diligence, wisdom and hope. These traits exist in us the Nigerian people. Because of who we are, democracy has the chance to flourish in this land.
“Thus, I commend all of you for your patience and peaceful conduct so far during this electoral season and especially during this intervening week following the postponement of the February 16 elections.”
The president further urged Nigerians who are eligible to vote to exercise their democratic rights without any fear of violence as he assured that security agencies are capable of maintaining law and order.
“I ask that you embrace and hold on to the importance of the moment soon to be upon us. Honour your civic duty as voters by going to the polls tomorrow to vote for the government of your choice, for the government that will lead Nigeria toward its finest destiny.
“As citizens there is no greater duty than this and no greater honour. Tomorrow, I know you will once again make Nigeria proud of its people.” he said.
A total of 72,775,502 Nigerians have permanent voters’ cards (PVC) to take part in tomorrow’s elections and the Governorship and State House of Assembly elections scheduled for March 9.