Nigerians have asked the two major candidates for next year’s presidential elections, Goodluck Jonathan and Muhammadu Buhari, to base their campaigns on issues.
President Jonathan is the candidate of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, while Mr. Buhari, a former military head of state, is the candidate of the opposition All Progresives Congress, APC.
The Nigerians, who spoke on Saturday at separate interviews with the News Agency of Nigeria in Abuja, appealed to the contestants not to use foul language. They said that the presidential candidates should base their campaigns on issues rather than resort to insulting each other. According to them, the two political figures must keep to the rule of law as outlined by the Electoral Act.
Anacletus Afiko, a civil servant, said the country’s democracy had moved from being nascent to a developed one, adding that “the politicians must be seen to grow with similar speed.”
“What we want is a president that can be accessible and be our friend,” he said.
Abdullahi Michi, a car dealer in Nyanya, said that the 2015 campaigns should be devoid of abuse and direct defamation of the characters of the two personalities.
“Buhari should know better, having served as Military Head of State; and Jonathan as sitting President that the sanctity of Nigeria should be uppermost and not the position,” he said.
He further said that the camp of the two contestants should ensure that their bosses were not instigated to throw caution to the wind.
“We need peace and development, violence only breeds retrogression and pain,” Mr. Michi said.
Janet Achadu, a teacher, said both candidates must ensure that their promises were achievable, adding that Nigerians are maturing very fast and they are beginning to decipher the capacities of their political leaders.
“As for me, our leaders should form the right synergy to take the country from the wood like it is done in the U.S., where former presidents are handy to assist the incumbent,” she said.
She further said that the processes leading to the 2015 general election had been peaceful so far, adding that Messrs. Jonathan and Buhari should not deviate from that path.