From Lawal Sa’idu Funtua, Katsina
The United States Ambassador in Nigeria, Mr. Stuart Symington has urged political parties and candidates participating in next week’s elections in Nigeria to be committed to the maintenance of peace after the elections.
Mr. Symington made the plea in Katsina when he met with candidates of major political parties vying for various elective positions in the gubernatorial and state house of assembly elections in Katsina State.
He led a team from the US embassy in Nigeria which met with the leadership of the ruling All Progressives Congress and the People’s democratic party at their different offices in Katsina, where he held open and closed-door sessions with both parties.
Briefing newsmen on the separate meetings, ambassador Symington noted that the US government has no candidate and no interest but the sustainance of peace during and after the elections.
The US ambassador urged INEC and other stakeholders to work towards free, fair and credible elections and assured Nigeria of US government’s continued cooperation in the promotion of the tenets of democracy.
The US Ambassador also paid a similar visit to the Katsina state police commissioner, Sanusi Buba at the state police headquarters where he commended the Nigeria police for its neutrality and efforts at maintaining security during the presidential and national assembly elections.
He said the US government was committed to the strengthening bilateral cooperation with the national and sub-national governments of Nigeria in areas of mutual benefit to both countries like security, health and economic prosperity.
Earlier while receiving the US Ambassador at the Government House in Katsina, Governor Aminu Bello Masari noted that the Nigerian government did not tamper or influence the process or outcome of the presidential and national assembly elections.
He said also commended the American government and the rest of the international community for their neutrality during the elections.
Also in his address while receiving the US ambassador at the PDP office in Katsina, the state party chairman, Alhaji Salisu Majigiri appreciated the US government’s concern in the maintenance of peace and security in Nigeria during and after elections.