The Chairman of National Peace Committee (NPC), General Abdulsalami Abubakar (rtd) and the Covener, Bishop Mathew Kukah have called on Nigerians to be resolute and not allow anything discourage them from participating in the coming polls on Saturday 23 February.
This was contained in a statement jointly signed by the, former Head of State, General Abdulsalami Abubakar and Convener, Bishop Mathew.
“We understand your right to feel disappointed by INEC. However, we appeal to you all to see this as a watershed in the life of our fledgling Democracy. The only way we can ensure a steady Democracy is for us to learn the lessons from these sad developments.
“Therefore, we appeal to you not to count the cost of the setback, but respond to the call to patriotism. Do not relent, go out and fulfil your duty to your family and country on Election Day. We will soon turn the corner in hope. Rather than despair, rise up to defend our Democracy,” the statement read in part.
“There is enough blame to pass around. The real challenge now is for us as a nation, to reach out to the deepest instincts of faith in God and our country. We must put everything aside and see this as a battle that all of us must win. The challenge is not who to sacrifice, but what sacrifice to make.
“The challenge before you goes beyond the narrowness of political opportunities. This is not time to trade blames or to incite your supporters. Be temperate in your language so that we do not inadvertently set up our people for violence,” the NPC said.
The National Peace Committee also challenged INEC to work toward reclaiming its integrity.
To do that, the committee urged the electoral body to “patiently continue to focus on attaining internal cohesion and coordination”.
“Do not give room to external enemies to infiltrate and destroy the confidence and trust that your organization has earned,” it added.
This is in line with similar statements from other prominent Nigerian leaders urging the electorate not allow anything stop them from exercising their right to vote.