Hundreds of jubilant youths took to the streets of Maiduguri, the Borno capital, to celebrate the re-election of President Muhammadu Buhari in the Feb. 23 presidential election.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the youths on Wednesday defied the prevailing curfew in the metropolis and trooped to the streets, beating drums and singing party solidarity songs to celebrate the victory of Buhari in the election.
The youths said they keenly watched the announcement of the presidential election result by the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, saying that as soon as the result was announced at 4.37 a.m. on Wednesday, they became fulfilled.
The INEC boss declared Buhari re-elected, having polled 15,191,847 votes, winning in 19 states, to defeat other 72 candidates, including Atiku Abubakar, the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) who scored 11,255,978 votes and won 17 states and the FCT.
A cross section of the jubilant Maiduguri residents told NAN that Buhari’s re-election is a victory for Nigerians and democracy.
Mustapha Shehu, a resident, said that the celebration was to show their happiness over the re-election of Buhari as president for a second term.
Shehu said that the outcome of the election as announced by INEC demonstrated the popular wishes of the people.
“The declaration of Buhari as the winner by INEC is true reflection of the choice we made in the election.
“We voted for Buhari in appreciation and support of what he has done and we want him to continue with the good work to move the country forward,” he said.
Amal Yusuf and Ahmed Umar also expressed joy over the development and hoped that the president would scale up counter insurgency campaign to end Boko Haram insurgency and restore peace to the Northeast region.
Also, Alhaji Aliyu Dalori, the Chairman of the APC in the state, said the re-election of Buhari would enable him to consolidate on the gains recorded in the counter insurgency campaign, rehabilitation and resettlement of displaced communities, as well as peacebuilding process in the region.
Dalori said: “President Buhari has demonstrated greater commitment to defeat Boko Haram insurgents, resettlement of displaced communities and restoration of peace in the region.
“In 2015; many local government areas were annexed by Boko Haram, under Buhari’s stewardship, all these areas were liberated and people resettled in those communities.
“Election was also conducted in places hitherto under the insurgents’ control.”
Dalori noted that the Buhari administration had achieved great feat in the provision of livelihood and adopted sound programmes to address the humanitarian crisis in the Northeast region, as well as fight corruption, reinvigorate agriculture and transform the nation’s economy.
While commending the electorate over their vote for Buhari and other candidates of the APC, the Chairman lauded INEC over the conduct of free, fair and credible election.