By Johnbosco Agbakwuru
ABUJA—PRESIDENT Muhammadu Buhari has assured Nigerians and the international community that the forthcoming general elections in 2019 will be free and fair and will usher the country into another clime of maturity, peace and unity.
President Buhari, who received Letters of Credence from four ambassadors at State House, including Ambassador of the Peoples’ Republic of Japan, Mr Yutaka Kikuta, in Abuja, yesterday, said the country’s political and electoral institutions had continued to evolve in strength, skill and experience after each election.
The president in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Chief Femi Adesina, said: “We are currently at the threshold of another general election and after five general elections in the country since 1999, we expect that the 2019 elections will be free and fair. The political system is good and if people work hard they will succeed.”
President Buhari also said the increase in number of political parties that will field candidates in 2019 elections indicates more democratic consciousness among Nigerians and willingness to serve the country.
Receiving Letter of Credence from the Ambassador of the Russian Federation, Alexey Shebarshin, the president noted that discussions on reviving the Ajaokuta Steel Complex, partnerships in agriculture and other bilateral interests in trade and economic development will be sustained, commending the country for always standing by Nigeria.
The President told the Ambassador of the Federative Republic of Brazil, Richardo Guerra De Araujo, that the historical ties between both countries and the shared potentials for growth will be further explored, with strong emphasis on economic and social development.
Receiving the Letter of Credence of the Ambassador of United Arab Emirates, Fahad Al Taffaq, President Buhari assured him that Nigeria remains committed to strengthening the bilateral relationship that has existed between both countries for many years.
In his remarks, the Ambassador of Japan said his country remained grateful for Nigeria’s concern and support during the flooding that devastated the country, promising to work hard to further enhance relations in technology, agriculture and trade.
The Ambassadors of Russia, Brazil and United Arab Emirates assured the president that they will work hard to ensure improved relations in key sectors of the economy, while wishing Nigeria the best in the forthcoming elections.