Foreign Countries under the European Union (EU) have expressed concerns
over the conduct of the 2019 elections considering the rising cases of
killings and violence in some parts of Nigeria, notably Plateau, Benue and
Sir Sean Hoy, the Ireland Ambassador to Nigeria, made this known in
Yenagoa on Wednesday during a call on the Bayelsa State Deputy Governor,
Rear Admiral John Jonah, at the Government House.
He said that although cases of violence cannot be ruled out anywhere in
the world, the recent cases of killings and violence in some parts of
Nigeria are worrisome.
“The international communities, particularly the European Union, are
concerned about the killings in the country and also the President of
Nigeria has shown concern. I was pleased that President Muhammad Buhari
visit Plateau state,” he said.
“We agreed that there would always be violence in the world. But it is our
responsibility, as leaders, to do what we can to reduce it and to look at
the causes of violence. If it is poverty or it insecurity, we need to find
ways to resolve it.
“I think most Nigerians live peacefully. And when such peace is
threatened, it is very bad. Now we are seeing insecurity and other
conflicts. And we think those are caused by bandits.
“I don’t believe that the peace-loving people of Nigeria are involved in
the violence along ethnic and religious grounds. And it is very important
that leaders preach peace because Nigerians are peaceful people and have
lived together for a long time. Now that Nigerians are being threatened by
negative Forces, that is where all of us, including world leaders, the
Nigerian people and communities, have to come together and preach peace.
“If people resist violence, it will not succeed, no matter who forced it.
On the issue of politicians’ involvement in killings and violence, we
don’t have evidence but also we are members of the international community
and can’t comment.”
On the 2019 general elections, Hoy also noted that the foreign countries
were concerned over the threat of peace ahead of the conduct of the
“Our concern is for the election to be free and fair and for voters and
the Nigerian people to accept the result. Our job is to make the election
to be free and fair. And for the people to accept it and the possibility
of violence will be reduced,” he said.
“But if politicians do not accept the result and communities do not accept
the result, them we have a situation on our hands. Our role is to provide
credible monitoring. We would have to monitor and offer assistance to
reduce violence. It is important that Nigeria shows example to other
African countries with the condition of 2019 election.”
Speaking, Jonah said the Restoration Administration, as Seriake Dickson’s
government is called, declared zero tolerance on crime and criminality
“You know that the fundamental objectives and directive principle of state
policy as stated in the constitution demands that the purpose of
government is for security and welfare of the people,” he said.
“And if you are in government, you must take the security and welfare of
the people seriously. Even at the United Nations level, when we’re talking
of security we emphasise human security and it involves access to
education, health, welfare and all that makes man move on. We have moved
from MDGs to SDGs and all these are directed at the developing countries
for obvious reasons and in Bayelsa state.”