By Lawrence Olaoye
President Goodluck Jonathan has tasked all the traditional rulers in the country to ensure the conduct of peaceful election across the country ahead of the 2015 general polls.
The President, in his address at the 7th General Assembly of the National Council of Traditional Rulers of Nigeria (NCTRN) in Abuja yesterday, urged the traditional rulers to enlighten their subjects on need for peace during and after the elections.
Jonathan, who was represented by his vice, Arc Mohammed Namadi Sambo, acknowledged the unifying force and the tremendous contributions of the traditional institution in maintaining peace and stability in the country.
“As royal fathers and traditional rulers, such a time calls for your wise counsel and the enlightenment of your subjects as well as prayers to ensure hitch-free and successful elections across the federation.
“The role of the traditional institutions as the custodian of our rich cultural heritage has contributed immensely to ensuring high moral standard amongst the citizenry and must be greatly appreciated.”
Jonathan equally called on the royal fathers to join hands with governments at all levels to ensure the end of the surmount able security challenges in the country.
In his remarks, the Chairman of the Northern States Governors Forum and also the Governor Niger state, Dr. Babangida Aliyu, lauded the traditional rulers for their dexterity.
He charged them to come up with holistic traditional mechanisms to address the security and socio-economic challenges in the country.
Earlier the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar III, reaffirmed the commitment of the royal fathers to the peace, unity, justice and stability of the nation, while also urging government to positively look into their recommendations.
He said the assembly was going to extensively deliberate on issues affecting the country, particularly the preparations leading to the 2015 general election by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), and the insecurity ravaging the North-Eastern part of the country, among others.
In his keynote address, the Chairman of INEC, Prof Attahiru Jega, assured the traditional rulers of the Commission’s readiness and determination to deliver a free, fair and credible election, in 2015, which would surpass that of 2011.
The National Council of Traditional Rulers of Nigeria (NCTRN), is chaired and co-chaired by the Sultan of Sokoto Alhaji (Dr) Mohammad Sa’ad Abubakar III and the Oni of Ife, Oba Okunade Sijuade.