Presidential election: Nigerian politics intriguing with promising future – UK 2023

Catriona Laing, the departing British High Commissioner in Nigeria, has praised Nigerian politics as intriguing and promising.

The British envoy disclosed this while speaking with media at the Senate wing of the National Assembly in Abuja on Tuesday, following a courtesy visit to Senate President Senator Ahmad Lawan.

Laing stated that although there were setbacks in the Presidential and National Assembly elections held on Saturday, February 25th, overall it was a constructive process and that Nigeria should be pleased, but with a significant shift from when she arrived in 2019.

The envoy described the Presidential and National Assembly elections conducted by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on February 25, 2023 as fascinating because it offered future assurances for democratic governance in the country, despite the litigations that followed their conduct.

She stated that the election process, despite being contested by certain political actors, was intriguing and augured well for the country’s future.

The ambassador stated, “I have made extremely excellent friends, and I adore Nigerian music and culture. Secondly, Nigerian politics are very intriguing.

“I was here till the last election and left after this election; I’m impressed with Nigeria’s democratic development.”

“Sure, some setbacks.

But overall, I consider this as a great development, and Nigeria should be proud, albeit a notable contrast from when I arrived in 2019.

“Nigeria is Africa’s largest democracy. The world is observing your transition to democracy.

“While there were some disappointments in the recent election, every Nigerian should be happy because since 1999 Nigeria has been on the right path in terms of participatory democracy.”

“The election here is really unique and intriguing, as you are transitioning to a three- or even four-party system. I believe Nigerians should realize that their votes matter, as well”, she stated.

Apart from the election, the British envoy praised Nigerians for their resilience in all adversity, stating, “There had been some terrible moments. We had COVID-19, and since I’ve been here, insecurity has increased significantly. The people of Nigeria are extraordinarily resilient. I am quite hopeful over Nigeria’s future. It has been a tremendous trip, and I am sad to see it end.”

Earlier in his remarks, the President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, praised the British envoy for her good attitude toward the nation and charged her with helping to develop bilateral relations between Nigeria and the United Kingdom.

Lawan stated, “Over the years, Nigeria and the United Kingdom have developed extremely friendly and diplomatic ties, which we feel a highly regarded diplomat like yourself can assist to promote and improve.”

He wished her well in all of her future endeavors.

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