From Romanus Ugwu, Abuja
As Nigeria celebrates her 62nd Independence anniversary, the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, has promised to eschew violence, recourse to divisive, incendiary politics.
He disclosed that he and his running mate, Kashim Shettima, have equally resolved to commit to a prosperous, violence-free, and democracy-filled Nigeria.
In a statement he personally signed and made available to newsmen, the former Lagos State governor said that Nigerian Independence provides the opportunity for stock-taking of how far Nigeria has come as a nation and how far it must go to achieve a better nation.
“As the nation heads toward the coming election, may we all eschew violence and recourse to divisive, incendiary politics that pull against the fabric of national unity and concord.
“My running mate, party and I stand committed to a prosperous, violence-free, and democracy-filled Nigeria. I ask you all to do the same. Only by so doing, shall we honour the sacrifices and devotion of our nation’s founders,” he quipped.
On the Independence, Asiwaju said: “This anniversary offers us the opportunity to take stock of how far we have come as a nation and how far we must go to achieve a better nation. Let us commit ourselves to Nigeria’s unity as well as to our collective improvement.”
He also preached the language of unity, noting: “we must see each other as brothers and sisters regardless of our ethnic, religious or regional diversity. In seeking national improvement, we must join hands in growing the economy, creating jobs, feeding the hungry, educating our youth, caring for the sick and protecting our people and their way of life from evil and misguided foes who seek to destroy all that is good.
“Today, let us thank President Muhammadu Buhari and his administration for their patriotic efforts in the service of the nation. We give utmost thanks to the committed service of the brave members of our armed forces, security and law enforcement agencies, some of whom have given their very lives in defence of our freedom against terrorism and violent extremism.
“We thank all who have dedicated their lives to public service and to the belief that this nation can be made great. We thank each and every law-abiding citizen of our great nation who dedicate their lives in the hope that Nigeria will better and more united.
“Today, I speak not of politics but patriotism. The time for politics will come soon enough. But the time for and demand of patriotism never fade.
“May we all seek the best for Nigeria regardless of partisan affiliation and may we never undermine the national purpose in pursuit of narrow gain,” he noted in the statement.