President Muhammadu Buhari promised to ensure a smooth handover of power to President-elect Asiwaju Bola Tinubu this year on Wednesday in Daura, Katsina State.
Buhari stated that he will now collaborate closely with Tinubu’s team to make this a reality.
Buhari, who admitted flaws in the electoral process, particularly in the electronic transmission of results, said in a statement signed early Wednesday by the President’s Senior Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, that it does not jeopardize the freeness and fairness of the elections.
Therefore, he urged aggrieved parties to take their complaints “to the courts, not to the streets.”
Tinubu was declared the winner of Saturday’s election by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), who received 8,794,726 votes.
Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party received 6,984,520 votes, Peter Obi of the Labour Party received 6,101,533 votes, and Rabiu Kwankwaso of the New Nigerian Peoples Party received 1,496,687 votes.
Reacting to the results Buhari said “I congratulate His Excellency Bola Tinubu on his victory.
“Elected by the people, he is the best person for the job. I shall now work with him and his team to ensure an orderly handover of power.
“The election was Africa’s largest democratic exercise. In a region that has undergone backsliding and military coups in recent years, this election demonstrates democracy’s continued relevance and capability to deliver for the people it serves.”
The President said Saturday’s election results reveal a ripening democracy in Nigeria.
According to him, “Never has the electoral map shifted so drastically in one cycle. In the presidential elections, states in all regions across the nation changed colour.
“Some of you may have noticed my home state amongst them. The winning candidate did not carry his own home state either.
“That happens during a competitive election. Votes and those that cast them cannot be taken for granted. Each must be earned. Competition is good for our democracy. There is no doubt the people’s decision has been rendered in the results we look at today.”