2023: Jonathan calls for issue-based campaigns, warns against hate speech

FORMER President Goodluck Jonathan has called for issue-based campaigns ahead of the 2023 general elections.

Speaking at the annual Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida (IBB) Legacy Dialogue held in Abuja on Thursday, Jonathan also urged candidates, political parties and supporters to shun hate speech.

He urged them to be mindful of the country’s fragile unity and stability, as well as the well-being of Nigerians.


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Jonathan said, “I, therefore, urge our politicians to be mindful of our unity and stability and exercise discipline in their campaigns and other political activities.

“To the rest of us, this period does not afford us the luxury of indifference. We must be determined to participate in our democratic processes.

“It requires that we must mobilise to vote those who will manage the affair of the country with honesty in order to guarantee peace, justice, unity and progress in our land.”

Also speaking at the event, Mohammed Namadi Sambo, who served as vice president under Jonathan, called for inclusiveness in governance.

The former governor of Kaduna State, who noted that Nigeria has witnessed six successful elections since the return to democratic rule in 1999, said it is an indication that democracy has become the best method of governance in the country.

According to him, democratic institutions have continued to be strengthened, while more Nigerians have continued to participate in the process.

“Political stability in Nigeria’s democracy is as strategic as stability in Africa’s democratic journey,” he said.

Sambo who was the Chairman of the event, urged Nigerians to be actively involved in the electoral process by exercising their constitutional rights.

He also urged the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to ensure adequate voter education and sufficient preparation for hitch-free elections.

He added, “Next year, by the grace of Almighty Allah, we shall witness another transition from one democratically elected government to another, Insha Allah. Nigeria must continue to get it right as a positive example for other countries in West Africa and indeed, beyond.”

In his remarks at the event, Minister of the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) Mohammed Bello, claimed that President Muhammadu Buhari has further entrenched democratic values in the country.

According to him, it is imperative that governments and people across Africa work hard to sustain the demands of democratic governance across the continent.






     

     

    “The signing into law of the Electoral Act 2022 by President Muhammadu Buhari, has far-reaching positive outcomes that will also strengthen the confidence of citizens in our electoral processes, leading ultimately to a more stable polity,” Bello said.

    The theme for this year’s IBB Legacy Dialogue organised by the Ibrahim and Maryam Babangida Presidential Library Foundation is ‘Issues in Africa’s Democratic Journey’.

    Some dignitaries at the event include vice presidential candidate of the Labour Party (LP) Yusuf Datti Baba-Ahmed and presidential candidate of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) Adewole Adebayo.

    Others include former governors of Niger and Edo states, Babangida Aliyu and Adams Oshiomhole, respectively, former Minister of Youth and Sports Solomon Dalung, former Minister of Special Duties Kabiru Turaki, former Minister of Information Labaran Maku, former Minister of State, Health Gabriel Aduku, former Minister of State, Works, Bashir Yuguda and former Minister of State, FCT, Chuka Odom, and Dino Melaye.

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