The Chairman of the Economic Community of West African States and Ghanaian President, John Mahama, has met with the Presidential Candidates of the Peoples Democratic Party President Goodluck Jonathan and the Presidential Candidate of the All Progressives Congress, Muhammadu Buhari.
Mr. Mahama met President Goodluck Jonathan on Monday, who is seeking re-election, at the Presidential wing of the Abuja airport.
Speaking to journalists after the closed door meeting, Mr. Mahama said ECOWAS expects violence-free elections and a post-election that will ensure that Nigeria maintains its place in the region.
He said ECOWAS hopes all “parties involved in the election would accept the results of the election in good faith when INEC has announced the results of the elections”.
“I am here in my capacity as the Chairman of the Authority of Heads of States of ECOWAS on election visit to the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“As you are aware, our sub- region this year, has five countries that are going through elections and ECOWAS has been involved in ensuring that this elections are held in a peaceful and transparent environment.
“We have tried to ensure that obstacles to free and fair elections are removed to ensure that election are free and fair, people would accept the results of those elections. As chair of the authorities of Heads of State of ECOWAS, I have extended my solidarity to the Nigerian people through my brother President Jonathan, to see that the whole of ECOWAS, not only ECOWAS, but the international community is in solidarity with Nigeria to have a very transparent election so that the democratic process in Nigeria will be better entrenched.
Mr. Mahama said Nigeria faces a critical election that will indicate to the world that Nigeria is democratic. He said ECOWAS will do everything possible to ensure that the elections hold peacefully especially because of the role Nigeria plays in the sub-region.
“As you know, Nigeria is a very important member of ECOWAS. The largest economy, the largest nation in the ECOWAS region and so Nigeria’s safety and security is the safety of and security of the whole of ECOWAS region and so I stand on behalf of all the Presidents of ECOWAS and wish that all Nigerians will come out and express their votes and their votes would count towards electing who becomes the next leader of this country,” he said.
The ECOWAS chairman later met with the Presidential Candidate of the All Progressives Congress, Mr. Buhari, and the chairman of the Independent Electoral Commission, Attahiru Jega.