Nigeria’s “successful” campaign against terrorism, banditry, and kidnapping will take much longer if the “hardworking” Armed Forces do not have widespread and popular support, according to President Muhammadu Buhari.
Bhari made this disclosure at an iftar dinner with representatives of the business community and political party leaders on Tuesday.
Buhari urged all political parties in the country to join his government’s fight against insecurity.
The president, who asked political parties to put elections and election-related disagreements aside, branded insecurity as the country’s “common enemy.”
‘I look forward to seeing the reflection of this spirit in the relationship between the parties and the government, especially as the electioneering season will soon be on us,’’ he said.
While addressing at the dinner about the ease of doing business in the country, the president reminded the captains of industry and political leaders that his administration had done an outstanding job in strengthening the business climate.
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He asked the corporate sector to support the government’s efforts to reduce poverty and create jobs for young people.
Senator Abdullahi Adamu, the APC’s National Chairman, asked political leaders to make unequivocal promises to peaceful and successful general elections in 2023, and challenged them to work together to accomplish this goal.
Engr. Yusuf Yabagi, the chairman of the Action Democratic Party (ADP) and coordinator of the Inter-Party Advisory Council (IPAC), who regarded the President as a true democrat, said the Iftar gathering and the President’s invitation had created “credibility, respect, and admiration in the polity.”
He said that IPAC was ready to honor the President as a “Hero of Democracy,” highlighting the historic signing into the law of the Electoral Act, which will ensure the country’s elections are peaceful, acceptable, and inclusive.
Yabagi commented on the upcoming elections, saying: ‘‘Mr President, history beckons on you. 2023 is going to be your glorious exit. That is our prayer and for that to happen you have to take charge of every activity that matters in the exercise’’.
The IPAC Coordinator praised INEC for its creativity and reforms aimed at ensuring credible elections and urged President Obama to investigate the role of security agencies in the next general elections.
‘‘Members of IPAC are worried by the programme of INEC that elected candidates will spend 10 months campaigning around the country. That is a herculean task.
‘‘We also want the President to consider the appointment of a Political Liaison Officer,’’ Yabagi said, noting that the office will ensure better coordination between the President’s office and the political parties.