My dear citizens of Plateau State, today as I address you, it is with gratitude to the Almighty God and to you all, for the wonderful privilege of leading this State and the Peoples Democratic Party as a two time elected Governor and now as Senator Elect of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. It has not been easy as these are not easy times, yet we have seen many successes and achievements that we should be proud of. It is possible however that in some areas, we may not have done as well as we hoped, but with God on our side, we have survived difficult moments together.
Our success has depended significantly on the people who work by supporting our plans to bring better conditions and the urgency with which we have done new things, striving, our hardest to do our best under very unpleasant circumstances. We have done our best but we have not been perfect.
There are those who may not agree with every decision or policy, under my administration as Governor, but we must remember that as we count our blessings and modest achievements, government alone cannot solve all problems. It is always alright to have differences of opinion, but we must at all times, avoid using such differences as justification for division and in-sighting anger and hatred against one another. We might have our differences, but we are one people with a common destiny in our rich diversity of culture and traditions. Our destiny is to unite, not divide, because we are each other’s business.
As we celebrate the Easter season occasioned by electoral victories and losses, we must remember that elections are not just about those who contested but about those who voted. Elected leaders come and go, but Plateau and Nigeria remains. While it is time to express happiness for electoral victories, it signals the beginning of real work that lies ahead. Victories are won after months of continuous work canvassing support but the daily discharge of public affairs requires that we must be prepared at all times to heal the divides that have held back our progress. Only through Team Work can our Dreams Work in Plateau State and our nation. Even though there is work in progress, there is so much work to be done considering the limited resources available!
Let me acknowledge the vigor with which all political parties set out to contest the Presidential, Senate and House of Representative positions but we must not allow the situation degenerate to a point of pitching religion against religion, prejudice against prejudice; communities against each other.
Our focus must remain on galvanizing scarce resource endowments to implement sustainable plans to create jobs, expand infrastructure, provide health care, provide social amenities, promote peace and reconciliation and guarantee development for the teaming population.
Our success in the next round of elections to enthrone credible leaderships for Governorship and House of Assembly membership depends entirely, as it always has done, on the people who work to bring meaningful development to the people. Our choices must therefore be anchored on how we can maintain what we have worked so hard to build, based on an informed appreciation of where we are coming from, to where we are and where we want our State to be. As we strive our hardest to do our best, it is our hope that the next generation of leaders will achieve more than what we have done.
Let me appreciate President Jonathan for maintaining the democratic values that we all have stood for, by saying with conviction that nobody’s ambition is worth the blood of any Nigerian. He has set the standard for us all especially for those who we did not win their votes. The true winners and heroes of this election are therefore the people of Nigeria, who in following the example of our dear President have avoided the kind of bloodbath that would have greeted such an electoral outcome going by our recent experiences and predictions about 2015. In spite of observed imperfections in electoral processes, we must sustain this legacy of non-violence, since elections remain the only acceptable peaceful method of choosing public officers and taking binding decisions concerning public policy by the vote of those formally qualified to participate.
Let me therefore congratulate all of us for successfully participating in the process of the March 28th General Elections with the commendable enthusiasm and commitment that was demonstrated statewide even as I encourage us to remain steadfast in our support and prayers as we prepare to turn out en mass for the April 11th elections. My call to the Independent National Electoral Commission is to ensure that all those who have performed their civic responsibility of registering as eligible voters and are on the Voters List, be it manual or electronic, should not again be denied their constitutional rights of participation in the April elections, in the light of the challenges associated with the aborted use of the electronic card readers and the in effective distribution of Permanent Voters Cards in some areas.
I also commend the Security Services for their role in ensuring that the elections were mostly peaceful and violence-free and trust that they will continue to discharge their role even better.
We must stand together as a people and look to the future with renewed optimism.
I thank you all once again for the great opportunity given to me to lead this State and assure you that I will continue to do my best at the helm of affairs in Plateau State until the end of my tenure.
God Bless Plateau State
God Bless Nigeria