The National Council of Traditional Rulers of Nigeria on Tuesday visited President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa in Abuja.
The Traditional Rulers led by its National Chairman, Alhaji Saad Abubakar III, the Sultan of Sokoto, congratulated Buhari on his re-election.
The Sultan said that Buhari’s re-election should be seen as the act of God which should not be challenged by anyone.
“Your election as president for the second tenure should be seen as what God has destined which no man could have changed that destiny.
“This result is the will of the Almighty God and therefore we call on all to give you maximum support for the achievement of peace, development and progress of our dear nation,” the Sultan said.
President Buhari was declared winner of the February 23 Presidential Election by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), having polled over 15million votes to defeat former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, the candidate of the strongest opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), who got over 11million votes.
Atiku however rejected the outcome of the election, saying that it did not reflect the will of the people and he would retrieve his mandate in court.
“We urge you Mr President to reciprocate by continuing to lead with justice and fairness as you openly said in your acceptance speech after the receipt of the certificate of return,’’ he said.
The Ooni of Ife, Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, in his own statement reaffirmed the traditional rulers determination to work closely with the federal government for the good of Nigeria.
He further urged Buhari to listen to criticism in a very constructive manner.
“We know that you are very passionate about the people of this country especially the common people.
“We want to urge you to continue to play that fatherly role. Let the whole nation see you as the true father; let the whole nation see you as the true president that will actually consolidate what has brought all of us together.’’
President Buhari in his response said that he plans to retire to his hometown, Daura, in Katsina State, after he completes his term in 2023.
According to Buhari’s aide, Garba Shehu, the President welcomed the traditional rulers to the Next Level, urging them to be prepared to play a crucial role in the prevention and detection of criminal activities.
Read Buhari’s statement below (as released by Mr. Garba Shehu, his Senior Special Assistant)
PRESIDENT BUHARI URGES TRADITIONAL RULERS TO SUPPORT FIGHT AGAINST CRIMINALITY
President Muhammadu Buhari Tuesday welcomed traditional rulers in the country to the “Next Level”, urging them to be prepared to play a crucial role in the prevention and detection of criminal activities in their domains.
Speaking while receiving members of the National Council of Traditional Rulers led by the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar III, at State House, Abuja, the President noted that involving the royal fathers had become necessary in view of the deep knowledge of their localities.
According to him, “You know all the families who harbour criminals and you know those who produce respectable individuals. You know the weaknesses of our society. We need your support to consolidate our achievements.”
President Buhari listed several significant efforts by his administration to enhance national security while emphasising the overall need for stability in the country.
“What we need now is your support. No government can serve creditably without your support. We will always count on your support,” he told the traditional rulers.
The President also welcomed the royal fathers to his “second and final term, at the end of which I will, God willing, go to Daura and settle down.”
The Sultan of Sokoto and Co-Chairman of the Council, told President Buhari that the body “on behalf of all the Traditional Rulers in Nigeria, is here to congratulate you on your re-election as the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.”
Urging “all Nigerians to accept the election result as the will of God,” the Sultan assured the President of the traditional rulers’ “continued unflinching support in your laudable projects, particularly your government’s cardinal objectives of fighting corruption, containing insecurity, generally sanitizing the governance machinery, entrenching discipline, hard work and peaceful co-existence amongst the citizenry.”
The Co-Chairman of the Council and Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi Ojaja II, assured President Buhari that their members would work very closely with his administration to fight criminal activities.
The Ooni urged the re-elected Nigerian leader to be a President for the whole nation and father to all citizens.
Senior Special Assistant to the President
(Media & Publicity)
March 5, 2019