News / Africa

Nigerian President Calls for Calm Following Re-Election

Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan (C), accompanied by his running mate Arc Namadi Sambo, is congratulated by Cabinet members after being declared winner of the presidential election, in Abuja, on April 18, 2011
Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan (C), accompanied by his running mate Arc Namadi Sambo, is congratulated by Cabinet members after being declared winner of the presidential election, in Abuja, on April 18, 2011

Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan is calling for calm after days of electoral violence following a presidential vote that most observers believe was largely free and fair. But the political party that finished second says Jonathan's re-election was rigged.

President Jonathan says security forces are moving to repress violence in northern states where rioters burned the home of his vice president, threw stones at security forces and broke open a jail.

"I want to ensure all Nigerians that government will take all necessary measures to guarantee the security of the lives and property of all Nigerians," he said.

In a nationwide address, President Jonathan called on the patriotism of political and religious leaders to urge their supporters to refrain from acts of bitterness and violence, saying no one's political ambition is worth the blood of Nigerians.

"We are all winners. In this context, there is no victor and no vanquished," Jonathan said. "Nigerians have proved to the world that we are capable of holding free, fair, and credible elections."

Electoral Commission president Attahiru Jega says Jonathan won about 57 percent of the vote.

"Goodluck E. Jonathan of PDP, having certified the requirements of the law and scored the highest number of votes is hereby declared the winner and his return elected," Jega said.

Jega says former military ruler Muhammadu Buhari finished second with about 31 percent. The secretary general of Buhari's party, Buba Galadima, says the vote was rigged.

"There can never be a winner to this election until either the elections are repeated or all the ballot papers are subjected to forensic scrutiny before we accept whatever results that will come out of it," Galadima said. "And we are sure, more than sure, that if these ballot papers are subjected to forensic analysis, General Buhari will win 70 to 80 percent of the total votes of Nigerians."

Galadima said that President Jonathan's call on his opponents to help stop the violence wrongly implies that they are responsible for it.

"We have not instructed anybody to create violence or to cause violence," insisted Galadima. "Asking anybody to stop that means we are taking responsibility for what is happening."

Jonathan avoids a second-round runoff with Buhari because the president won at least one-quarter of the vote in at least 24 states.

That provision is meant to ensure that a Nigerian president has some degree of national support and is not simply a regional candidate. But the vote broke down along regional lines anyway with President Jonathan winning the south and Buhari winning the north.

You May Like

Reports of Mass Murder on Mediterranean Smuggler’s Boat

Boat sailed from Libya with 750 migrants aboard and arrived in Italy with 569 More

Video New Thailand Hotline Targets Misbehaving Monks

Officials say move aims to restore country’s image of Buddhism, tarnished by recent high profile scandals such as opulent lifestyle, drug and alcohol abuse, as well as child sex abuse More

Study: Dust from Sahara Helped Form Bahama Islands

What does the Sahara have in common with a Caribbean island? Quite a lot, researchers say More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Astronauts Train in Underwater Labi
X
George Putic
July 25, 2014 7:25 PM
In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Not Even Monks Spared From Thailand’s Junta-Backed Morality Push

With Thailand’s military government firmly in control after May’s bloodless coup, authorities are carrying out plans they say are aimed at restoring discipline, morality and patriotism to all Thais. The measures include a crackdown on illegal gambling, education reforms to promote students’ moral development, and a new 24-hour phone hotline for citizens to report misbehaving monks. Steve Sandford reports from Bangkok.
Video

Video Virtual Program Teaches Farming Skills

In a fast-changing world beset by unpredictable climate conditions, farmers cannot afford to ignore new technology. Researchers in Australia are developing an online virtual world program to share information about climate change and more sustainable farming techniques for sugar cane growers. As VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports, the idea is to create a wider support network for farmers.
Video

Video Airline Expert: Missile will Show Signature on Debris

The debris field from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 is spread over a 21-kilometer radius in eastern Ukraine. It is expected to take investigators months to sort through the airplane pieces to learn about the missile that brought down the jetliner and who fired it. VOAs Carolyn Presutti explains how this work will be done.
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.

AppleAndroid