February 11, 2015 – President Goodluck Jonathan today assured Nigerians that he will quit office if he loses election of March 28, 2015.
The President who was speaking in a Media Chat in Abuja reiterated that a new President will be inaugurated on May 29, 2015 and that the date remains sacrosanct.
He said he wanted to set a record in 2011 as the first African President to lose election adding that now it is no longer news for Presidents to lose election adding that his position still remains the same.
He said he had no input in the rescheduled election and that it was strictly the responsibility of Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and cited example of 2011 when he had already travelled to his village in Bayelsa in preparation for the election before INEC announced that the election had been rescheduled.
The President said he has no plans to sack or to send INEC Chairman, Professor Attahiru Jega on three months terminal leave even though he has the power to sack him, since he hired him as well as all the remaining Resident Electoral Commission (RECs).
He explained that prior to the new date, collection of Permanent Voter Card (PVC) in Lagos and Ogun State was about 23 percent whereas it is 80 percent in other areas.
He said he would carry the blame whether or not the election was credible adding that latest report suggests that things have improved and that percentage of collection should get to a level where the election would be acceptable to all Nigerians.
On security, he said the situation is now more hopeful than before adding that government has received weapons that would enable the army to move faster in the war against Boko Haram.
He said that even though the American government refused to sell weapons to Nigeria, government was able to procure weapons from other sources.
He said it is unfortunate that Nigerians are playing politics with the issue of security and wondered if Americans did the same during 911 attacks.
On seized money in South Africa, he said the matter is in court and that the money was in the first place not Nigeria’s money since it was already paid to the contractor whom he said delivered the weapons the money was meant to purchase.
He said countries like Niger, Cameroon and others were initially reluctant to join the multinational force due to lack of legal backing until recently when it was backed by law through the United Nations and the European Union.
Jonathan said he believes that with the current situation, things will go in such a way that some of the Chibok girls will be rescued alive. He said it may not be possible to get all the girls back since they are in the custody of criminals.