The United States (US) government has reiterated that it is not supporting any candidate in the February 25, presidential election in Nigeria.
The US Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of African Affairs, Molly Phee, disclosed this yesterday in Abuja when she led a delegation that included the US Ambassador to Nigeria, Mary Beth Leonard, to the headquarters of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
Phee said, “I do want to make clear that the United States does not back any candidate or party, we back the process. We back democracy.”
While noting that the US valued its partnership with Nigeria, she said, “We are both diverse democracy and we want to encourage a successful election that is free and fair and peaceful. And I am happy to say that I have great confidence that you will have a successful election.
“Since 1999, Nigeria has been moving up in solidifying and consolidating its democratic trajectory. And now, with INEC under the leadership of the chairman and the support of his superb team, all Nigerians can have confidence in the integrity of the upcoming elections.”
INEC Chairman, Prof Mahmood Yakubu, assured that the commission was committed to the electoral process.
He said, “Like the United States, INEC is only interested in the process. The commission is not a political party. We have no candidates in the elections.”