A director in the campaign council of the All Progressives Congress, Nuhu Ribadu, has said the president, Muhammadu Buhari, allowed for free contest without interfering with the work of security agencies.
Buhari was declared winner, on Wednesday, of the keenly contested presidential election, which took place on Monday.
The main opposition party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), alleged rigging and manipulation of the process, though some observer groups have said the polls were credible.
Speaking at a reception to thank members of his Field Operations directorate, Ribadu said Buhari did not allow the use of state apparatus to influence the outcome of the elections.
“We will continue to be happy for the next four years because we have done something that is good for our country; we have re-elected a good man. Buhari is a good man. He is genuine. He is a fair gentleman. He is honest.
“He will protect our resources, he will. He will not allow bad people to cheat us and steal from our own commonwealth. He will not! And that is what we want in a leader. He will not go and sale Nigeria. He will not sale whatever that we have. He will not sit with anybody to plot evil or do bad thing. He will not.
“I saw it at a very close range, even up to this election. There was never a day or a minute that Buhari sat down and told us, as his own campaign council, to go and do a bad thing. Never! He refused to allow even the traditional way of politicians taking advantage of what they have. He refused. He refused to talk to the law enforcement agencies.
“He refused to interfere with INEC. He said let us go and meet the people, lets sell our own product, lets tell Nigerians what we have, and if they want to buy, let them take it. It is not about money, or intimidation, we would give Nigerians free opportunity and chance to decide and they decided,” he said.
Ribadu thanked the over 600,000 canvassers who worked at polling uints across the country to canvas for votes for the president. He assured them that their work will be rewarded.
“Ladies and gentlemen let us be very, very proud of ourselves. We did something that money cannot buy. We did it honestly and only God can testify to that. We didn’t invite people to even come and look at it, no. The best human being is one that will do good thing without necessarily waiting for people to take note.
“Honestly, be proud of yourselves, genuinely! And you will see the reward of it; it will come. No good work can go unrewarded, one way or the other, it will come. It may not be today, it may not be tomorrow in the morning, but certainly it is going to come.”
Ribadu said it was impressive that people got down to work and bonded very well into a team to deliver on the directorate’s mandate even though there was no money to share as it was the case with political campaigns.
He also urged the canvassers to work towards ensuring success of the party in the upcoming governorship and state assembly elections.
“The election are not over yet. We still have one important election waiting for us. We just got one, presidential and National Assembly. We have another one coming, in a matter of ten days now or less, the gubernatorial and state assemblies. It is a very important election for the party. I want to appeal to all of us, let us take it equally very important. We have already done a wonderful job and we are capable of doing that again.
“The work we are doing is a continuation of supporting President Muhammadu Buhari because he would need a party that has majority of states in Nigeria. He would need more governors so that he can carry on with his work and implement the policies of our party.
“The governors would also require our own state assembly members. Governance is about a team work. I therefore appeal to us, let us go back and continue with this work. It is not yet time to rest until it is over,” he explained.
Some members of the directorate who spoke at the meeting thanked Ribadu for his leadership which, they said, held the team together even as they faced elections with challenges such as finances.