Nigerian President, Muhammadu Buhari, on Tuesday, January 7, has cautioned the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the Nigerian Police Force, NPF, to avoid rigging elections in favour one political party in future elections.
Buhari who expressed his determination to give Nigeria an electoral system that meets with best practices anywhere in the world.
He spoke on Tuesday at State House, Abuja, while meeting with Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Professor Mahmood Yakubu, other top officials of the electoral body, and the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu.
The president said with a minimum of 28 rerun and by-elections this January alone, the commission should ensure that the game is played by the rules, without fear or favour.
He charged the electoral umpire to stick to the rules of fair play and adherence to justice in line with resolve to engender a free, fair and credible electoral process.
“Those that you declare as winners must be the candidates that the people have chosen. Democracy is about free will, and the will of the people must be allowed to prevail.
“Get your acts right, and leave no room for underhand tricks or manipulation,” he said in a statement issued by his media aide, Femi Adesina.
President Buhari said he expected nothing than a scrupulous securing of the electoral process, without bias or favouritism from the Nigerian Police Force. “Our elections must be done in violence-free atmosphere.
The process must be free, fair, decent, devoid of intimidation or malpractices.
It is the duty of the police to accomplish that, and it is what I expect in the elections immediately ahead, and going forward,” he said.
Both INEC and the police promised a fidelity to the rules and regulations, stating that they know President Buhari as someone passionately committed to fair play.