In lieu of the 2023 general elections, some of the campaigns to usher in a new political dispensation for 2023 has begun and the Nigerian President, Muhammadu Buhari has also revealed that he will be welcoming the initiative which had been undertaken by the National Peace Committee to commit all the political actors to issue-based campaigns which would be completely devoid of incitement, personal insults and attacks.
He had made this statement in a video message which had been displayed at the signing of the 2023 election Peace Accord by some of the presidential candidates which had been organised by the National Peace Committee, on Thursday in Abuja.
Buhari had also warned that the rise of fake news and misinformation has also continued to pose a significant threat to democracy in Nigeria.
He had revealed that the fake news and misinformation have a;lso shifted focus away from issue-based campaigns to amplifying the potential for personal attacks, insults and incitements and he had noted that this has significantly diminished civility and decency in public discourse and debate.
”The 2023 election is more than an election, it is an opportunity to serve Nigeria, to defend Nigeria and to uphold her unity and progress,” the President said re-echoing the words of the Chairman of the Peace Committee, last week.
He stated, ”Therefore, I call on all Nigerians, political parties, politicians, security agencies, the Independent National Electoral Commission, and all stakeholders to ensure that Nigeria is placed first above regional and sectional claims.
”I appeal to the contestants, especially their publicity agents and media advisers to shun personal attacks, avoid insults and incitement, reject the spread of fake news, and commit to issue-based campaigns and political rallies.
”Once again, let me emphasise that everything must be done to support the National Peace Committee in its work to ensure peaceful elections in Nigeria.”
While also reiterating his commitment to the use of peaceful, credible and transparent elections, President Buhari said what the Peace Committee, led by its chairman and a former Head of State, General Abdulsalami Abubakar, has been doing over the years, aligns with his belief that Nigeria needs peace to achieve credible elections.