ECOWAS Parliament on Monday in Abuja congratulated Nigeria for the peaceful conduct of its 2023 general elections. While addressing the opening of the First Ordinary Session of the parliament, the speaker, Sidie Tunis, also commended Peter Obi of the Labour Party and Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for heading to court to challenge the victory of Bola Tinubu of APC.
“I thank aggrieved parties for seeking redress in the court of law. Such is the democracy we crave, and I am grateful that Nigeria, our biggest democracy, is leading by example,’’ Mr Tunis said. He congratulated Mr Tinubu, just as he commended President Muhammadu Buhari on the conduct of the general election. “I also extol the statesmanship of President Muhammadu Buhari for sticking to his term limit and facilitating a smooth transition to his successor,” he said.
He added that the parliament followed events in Sierra Leone and Liberia closely as both countries prepared to hold presidential and legislative elections in June and October, respectively.
Mr Tunis also extolled the ECOWAS Commission and the AU for conducting a joint technical pre-election fact-finding mission to Sierra Leone to assess the country’s level of preparedness for the electioneering process. “I thank the government of Sierra Leone for its commitment to upholding the principles of democratic elections and commend all stakeholders for being committed to the democratic process.
In Liberia, we commend ECOWAS and the UN on whose auspices the Farmington Declaration was signed, committing all political parties to violence-free elections. “We shall continue to engage with both countries within the framework of ensuring that both elections are peaceful, free, fair and transparent,’’ Mr Tunis said. The speaker also said legislative elections were expected to be held in Guinea Bissau in June, following months of the dissolution of parliamentary activities.
Mr Tunis said the parliament remained “very concerned over the pace at which the transitional processes are unfolding in Mali, Guinea and Burkina Faso’’. He said the parliament was worried about the proliferation of terrorist activities in the Sahel, which had killed innocent people. He stressed that parliament expected the president of the ECOWAS Commission to provide detailed explanations of the issues during the presentation of his report.