No foreign leader has ever deleted a congratulatory message to any president-elect before ~ Prof Odinkalu
Amid ongoing controversy that has continued to dog the outcome of the just-concluded presidential election at every twist and turn, internationally acclaimed lawyer and human rights activist, Professor Chidi Odinkalu has come out to share his thoughts on the various consequences of the below-par performance of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), especially in the eyes of the rest of the world.
Speaking during an interview on Sahara Reporters TV a few hours ago, Odinkalu stated that not only is this the first-time widespread celebration would be absent over the election of a presidential candidate in the country, but it is also the first-time leaders of foreign countries would delete their congratulatory messages initially sent to a Nigerian president-elect.
“INEC announced the results at night and nobody celebrated. I think that sums up the entire election. You would want to think that when an election has been anticipated for this long, and the contest is as keen, then when the results are announced, at least some people would be happy. And even if the results were not on the side you preferred, you would at least be relieved that the tension is over, right? But this is the first time in Nigeria since the presidential elections began in 1999 that nobody has dared to celebrate the results of an election. And in my lifetime, since witnessing elections as a kid in 1979, this is the first time nobody is celebrating an election.
It is also the first time that the results were announced at night, about the time when witches and wizards are returning from their covens. It is also the first-time respectable people around the world are unwilling to congratulate the winner. No foreign leader has ever deleted a congratulatory message to any of our presidents-elects before. But some people like the former President of Liberia, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf have had to delete their congratulatory messages. It says a lot about what was done. But the dreadful about it all is the willful and egregious manner in which INEC under the leadership of Mahmud Yakubu has willfully and deliberately destroyed all the progress a generation of Nigerians have made in trying to build a dependable electoral administration.”