President Muhammadu Buhari
President Muhammadu Buhari

President Buhari Calls 2023 General Elections a Step Forward for Nigeria’s Democracy

NEWS DIGEST – President Muhammadu Buhari has praised the 2023 general elections, which resulted in Bola Tinubu being named Nigeria’s next president, as mainly free and fair.

Despite the rising number of post-election lawsuits, the president reaffirmed his satisfaction with the voting process in a meeting with US Ambassador to Nigeria, Mary Leonard on Tuesday.

Mr Buhari contends that the number of surprises recorded in the election demonstrated that voters were free to exercise their franchise and that the country’s democracy was maturing.

“People are realizing their power,” he said. “Given the chance of a free and fair vote, nobody can them what to do.”

Mr Buhari said that the cash swap policy was implemented on time to decrease the influence of money in the selection of Nigeria’s elected representatives.

Vote buying has historically had a negative impact on Nigerian general elections, but the president added that the currency exchange has made it more difficult for politicians to gain cheap votes using money.

“But even then, I told voters to take the money and vote according to their consciences,” he continued.

Despite the fact that irregularities and violence marred the general elections, several foreign observers have praised the manner in which the polls were conducted.

According to the Washington Post, an American newspaper, Nigeria has begun to map a trail for other West African countries to follow in their quest for democracy.

There were no complaints of post-election violence, intimidation, or threats, the newspaper went on to say. According to the report, candidates from opposition parties who were dissatisfied with INEC’s performance in the election sought to reclaim their mandate peacefully in court.

“No one has blocked highways, as happened in Brazil after Jair Bolsonaro lost his re-election bid. Opposition party supporters have not attempted an insurrection,” the paper wrote in an editorial.

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