Amid cheers from supporters and family members who filled the International Conference Centre Abuja, President-elect, Bola Tinubu, and VP-elect, Kashim Shettima, were on Wednesday, presented with their certificates of return as the winners of the 2023 presidential election.
INEC Chairman and Returning Officer for the election, Mahmood Yakubu, who earlier in the day declared the All Progressive Congress (APC) candidate as the winner of the election, presented them with the certificates.
Speaking after receiving the certificate of return, Mr Tinubu preached patriotism and called on all Nigerians, including those who did not vote for him, to work with him in making the country great.
Mr Tinubu, who said he understands their disappointment, noted that he is open to working with them.
“I am asking you to work with me,” he said. “I may be the president in the election, but I need you. More importantly, Nigeria needs you a lot more.”
“I send the embrace and comfort of one family member to another. This great project called Nigeria beckons us all. It is bigger and more important than any partisan divide.
While he asked his supporters not to rest on their oars, he called on those who oppose him not to dwell too much in disappointment and see quickly how they can work with him for the progress of the country
He said: “To those who did not support me, do not allow the disappointment of this moment to keep you from realising the historic national progress we can make by working together.
“We must join hands in this common endeavour to pull the nation through…My heart, my doors are open to you. I ask you to come in so that we may begin the task of rebuilding our national home together, day by day, brick by brick.
“Where there’s poverty, let us create prosperity and jobs. Where there’s hunger, let us feed the people, chasing the hunger from our midst. Where there’s no scarcity, let us rediscover abundance. Where there’s brutality, we may replace it with brotherhood…Where others have erected temples to hatred and bias, we may reconstruct permanent monuments to compassion and abiding affection.
“We are committed to the progress, development and renew the hope of Nigerians,” he added.
Nigeria will soon elect a young person, woman as President – Tinubu
At the ceremony, very soon, Mr Tinubu said Nigeria shall witness a young person being elected the President who will hold the certificate of return as a symbol of democracy and national leadership.
He also said the country shall see a woman being elected President and issued a certificate of return as its owner.
“We shall experience someone from a tribe that many people have tried to dismiss as somehow beginning disqualified for this high office,” he said.
He told Nigerians that by dint of hard work, determination and unyielding belief in a noble endeavour, they can achieve the best of things.
“There are young people listening to me right now who shall one day be the leaders of our precious and exceptional democratic republic.
“Thus, by taking this certificate, I assume a sacred duty I shall never ignore.
He told the youths that he will work day and night to the utmost best of his ability to make Nigeria better.
” For this to be a victory at all, it cannot simply be a victory for one man or even one party. It must become a victory for all Nigerians who are committed to a greater society,” he said.
“I know many did not vote for me. And you are disappointed that your candidate is not where I now stand.
” I understand your hurt. To you, I extend the embrace and comfort of one family member to another.’
He said Nigeria is a great project which beckons us all, saying it’s bigger and more important than any partisan divide.
He called on his supporters to continue to have faith in the mission that they have articulated.
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The President-elect has been receiving congratulatory messages from his associates, and party leaders, including President Muhammadu Buhari, though none of the other three leading candidates in the keenly contested election has conceded victory nor called to congratulate him.
Picture: President-elect, Bola Tinubu flanked by his wife, Remi Tinubu and the INEC Chairman Yakubu shortly after receiving the certificate of return as the winner of the 2023 presidential elections.
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