I HAVE DELIVERED ON MY PROMISES – JONATHAN
President Goodluck Jonathan has expressed happiness with the outcome of Saturday's National Assembly elections, saying that the testimonies from Nigerians as to the credibility had laid credence to the promise he made to deliver free and fair elections.
He said this yesterday when he visited the seven female and eight male victims that survived the Suleja bomb blasts at the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) office on the eve of the elections.
Jonathan who arrived the Gwagwalada Teaching Hospital at 2.16 p.m. was received by the Chief Medical Director, Dr. Peter Alabi, accompanied by the Minister of Defence, Adetokunbo Ademola and senior aides of the presidency.
He offered words of sympathy to each of the victims who all sustained severe injuries with one of them losing his eyes. Speaking to newsmen later after signing the hospital guest book, President Jonathan, assured that government would foot the bill of the victims as well as compensate families who lost loved ones. He expressed regrets that lives of innocent youths that were committed to the service of their fatherland were cut short in their prime, vowing to punish the perpetrators behind the dastardly acts.
He condemned those behind the Suleja bomb blasts, saying those who target the youths were targeting the nation. Commenting on Saturday's election that has so far been adjudged free and fair, the President said he was happy with the exercise despite the fact that some of his friends lost out in the elections.
He admitted that though there were pockets of hiccups, Nigerians appeared satisfied with the smooth conduct of the elections. The President however expressed confidence that INEC would continue to improve in the remaining elections.
Jonathan stated that with the success so far recorded, he was optimistic that Nigeria would get it right by 2015, stressing that he was happy because Nigerians were satisfied that the elections were free and fair.
The President said, 'As regards the elections, we all are happy that despite some setbacks that were witnessed generally, Nigerians are happy that at least they can decide who will represent them at the National Assembly or who will govern them after the presidential elections coming up, in the governorship and state house of assembly elections.
That has given us hope. And of course we have even improved. I believe that by 2015 when elections would be conducted in this country, some of the hiccups we witnessed on Saturday would have abate itself. I also believe that any subsequent election like the one coming up this Saturday and upper Saturday will definitely improve on this. So for that I'm quite happy.
'But having inspected the hospital wards, and I have seen young people who are serving their nation just caught up in these dastardly acts by some anti-social elements I feel sad. These are young people in the prime of their life. The hope and future of Nigeria, anybody targeting the youth are targeting the country. They don't mean well for the nation. Well in all societies we have such people but as a government, we will make sure that we would look out for them and God's willing we would get them, not all but some of them. And they would face the law.
'For the injured, the government will take care of all their medical bills and by the time they are okay, we would look at their conditions. The ones that are having pressure to take care of themselves, with what I have seen government will definitely assist,' he said.