Press statement March 25, 2015, Abuja, Nigeria

On March 28, 2015, our beloved nation will make a very important decision on the road we should take in our journey to a new Nigeria.

Before we cast our vote to elect a President, we should reflect deeply on whether in the past 16 years of our democratic practice, we have done as well as we should have as resourceful citizens of a nation that is blessed with abundant human and material resources and as the sixth largest exporter of crude oil in the world.

We should remove the lure of ethnicity and dwell on the enduring strength of building a stronger democratic Nigeria for the benefit of all. We should also remove the division of religious differences and stand firm on the binding resolve to remain an indivisible nation with a common destiny.

We should bear in mind that the decision we make would determine how we can heal the pain in our land. It would also determine the standard of living of Nigerians as well as the respect our nation has in the comity of nations. It will equally determine the future we will bequeath to our children.

I urge my fellow country men and women, that as they vote, they should be guided by the love of our country and the need for a resolute leader who can help us to do it right and get it right for the sake of our renewal as a nation and redemption as a people.

We should eschew violence when voting. We should never forget that peace is an important ingredient for development to thrive and endure, especially in a democracy.

I call on the INEC to be guided by the respect for the sanctity of the vote as the inviolable source of popular sovereignty in a democracy. It should not vitiate this sacred covenant. This is the obligation it owes the Nigerian people in order to safeguard our democracy and strengthen the electoral process.

Finally, I am confident that with the determination to succeed, Nigeria will surely triumph. The challenge we face is for all to collectively resolve to make this possible.

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