The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) is elated at the orderly, peaceful and all-inclusive conduct of Saturday’s Presidential elections. Despite some hitches, which are not unexpected in elections of such magnitude, the elections were relative to our history, an unqualified success.
Congress salutes Nigerians for defying security threats including rumours of bombs in places like Abuja and Niger State, to deliver a clear message that they cannot be intimidated or deterred. We laud the orderly process of the elections and the exemplary conduct of the voters.
The NLC commends the sacrifices of the Nigerian populace who spent hours queuing for accreditation, for the vote, and finally staying behind for the vote count to ensure that their precious votes count.
Never in our history has such conduct, resolve and commitment of the voting populace been so clearly demonstrated.
The Nigerian people got the National Assembly elections right, we got the presidential elections right; all we need to make definitive history is to get the State elections right, and we know we can! When we do, these would be the first controversy-free, all-inclusive, and demonstrably fair and just elections in our country since colonial times.
The success of the Presidential elections is due primarily to the resolve of Nigerians that, like in other parts of the civilized world, the vote must count and that the will of the electorate must prevail.
Also quite commendable is the hard work, resolve and demonstrable impartiality and competence of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
The NLC is particularly proud that the Labour Movement produced and gave the country, the INEC chairman, Professor Attahiru Jega who as the symbol of the electoral body , has shown exemplary conduct, single mindedness, fort rightness and commitment to the democratic process.
Also worthy of commendation is the police and other security agencies that provided needed security, and the candidates who stayed focused on issues rather than engage in mudslinging or playing up primordial sentiments. Also commendable is the political leadership of the country whose utterances and body language sent a clear message that the era of do-or-die politics, or imposition of elected leaders, is over.
Congress has no doubt that if the populace carries the type of consciousness and determination it displayed in the Presidential elections into the process of governance, and asserts its right as the sovereign power in the land, we shall give birth to a new nation in which the people are subjects not objects; where the general citizenry is the powerful, not the powerless. We shall have a new democratic dispensation in which the views, feelings, opinions and interests of the populace shall be the determinant factor in policy making and implementation. It shall be a new Nigeria where the electorate can in practice exercise the power of recall over any elected politician, and determine the country’s path of development.
The NLC congratulates the populace and urges all Nigerian voters to troop out in the rest of the elections to make the entire 2011 General Elections, an unqualified success.
Ag General Secretary.