Use legal channels to contest presidential election result, UN tells opposition



The United Nations (UN) says political parties and candidates aggrieved with the results of the presidential elections should take it up legally and constitutionally.


Speaking with NAN in New York, Stéphane Dujarric, UN spokesperson, said Nigeria has a strong history of peaceful transition of power.


He said the UN had offered technical support to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), adding that the aid yielded “some” results.


Dujarric said although the UN did not play a role in observing the elections, he said it is common for tensions to arise whenever results do not sit well with the people.


 “Yes, I mentioned to you earlier, that United National Development Programme (UNDP), offered technical support to Independent National Electoral Commission. We are not an observer on these elections,” NAN quoted the UN spokesperson as saying.


“Included in this support has been technical support to improve the process and use of technology in preparing for and managing the election.


“There’s not for the UN to say ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ on how the elections were run. I think, Nigeria has a very strong and proud democratic history of peaceful transition of power in recent years. There is a process ongoing.


 “It is important at this point in any election, in any country, and we’ve seen it in the north, we’ve seen it in the south and east and west, we’ve seen issues of great tension following elections when people didn’t accept the results.”


Dujarric called for calm in the country, saying it would take a process to see desired results.


He added that the legal use of seeking solutions to the problems arising from the election results would play a role in stabilising the country.


“It is important that all stakeholders work for the better, for the stability of the country and use existing legal and constitutional channels to challenge, if they so wish, any election results,” the UN spokesperson said.


 “What is important is that as in any election, any… that if any candidate or group of candidates have an issue with the results that they go through the established legal and constitutional channels to work out their challenges.


“And it is very important for everyone to remain calm as that process or these processes play out.”


On Wednesday, INEC declared Bola Tinubu as the winner of the 2023 presidential election.


The Labour Party (LP) and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) have asked Yakubu Mahmood to resign as the INEC chair and demanded that the presidential election be conducted afresh.


The parties said the elections were a sham and a “rape of democracy”.

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