By Damilola Oyedele in Abuja
The United States President Barack Obama has commended President Goodluck Jonathan for placing the interest of Nigeria first by conceding the presidential elections and congratulating his opponent, Muhammad Buhari on his victory.
“I look forward to working with President Jonathan throughout the remainder of his term, and I thank him for his many years of service and his statesmanlike conduct at this critical juncture,“ Obama said in a statement on Wednesday.
He urged Jonathan and Buhari to repeat their calls to their supporters to continue to respect the outcomes of the elections, to focus on unifying the country, and together lead Nigeria through a peaceful transition.
“The last few days have shown the world the strength of Nigeria’s commitment to democratic principles. By turning out in large numbers and sometimes waiting all day to cast their votes, Nigerians came together to decide the future of their country peacefully,” Obama said.
He also commended INEC and its Chairman, Prof. Attahiru Jega who he said deserves special recognition for overseeing an electoral process which international observers have hailed as largely peaceful and orderly.
He lauded the commission for its extensive efforts to increase the credibility and transparency of the electoral process.
“ Looking ahead to the gubernatorial elections on April 11, it is imperative that national attention turn to ensuring isolated logistical challenges are overcome and peace is protected, even in the most hotly contested races. On behalf of the American people, I extend congratulations to the people of Nigeria and to President-Elect Buhari and look forward to continuing to work with the newly-elected government on our many shared priorities,” Obama said.
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