Anxiety enveloped Aso Rock, the seat of power yesterday, as staff of the presidential villa, Abuja who reported for duty yesterday waited curiously, while the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC)collated the results of last Saturday’s presidential poll.
This is even as President Goodluck Jonathan had a closed-door meeting with some former African leaders who led international foreign observers who monitored Saturday’s presidential and National Assembly elections.
The former African leaders and the international monitoring led by former President of Ghana, John Kuffour (ECOWAS mission) and his Malawian counterpart Bakili Muluzi (Commonwealth mission) said they were in Aso Rock to present the report of their assignment in Nigeria to Jonathan.
Meanwhile, the usual buoyant atmosphere which had always characterised Aso Rock on working days when workers went about their duties gave way to a mood of anxiety and uncertainty yesterday, as they awaited the result of the presidential poll.
Even Nigerian renown mathematician, Prof. Chike Obi would have gone green with envy watching the way some staff at the villa were busying with their calculators doing their individual arithmetic and collation with consummate exactitude when INEC released the first round of results.
But President Jonathan who the received international observers who came to present the elections monitoring report to him maintained a calm disposition as he welcomed the visitors to Aso Rock.
They observers lauded the president for the conduct of the 2015 general elections, saying it was transparent and peaceful.
The election observers at the meeting included former Ghanian President, Mr. John Kuffour, who is also the leader of the ECOWAS Elections Observers; former Liberian President, Amos Sawyer, who is leading the African Union Election Observer Mission; former Malawian President and Head of Commonwealth Election Observer Mission, Bakili Muluzi and the AU Commissioner for Political Affairs, Ambassador Aisha Laraba Abdullahi.
After the meeting, Kuffour who spoke to journalists said they were at the villa to thank the President and his deputy, Vice President Namadi Sambo before some of them would leave the country to give interim reports to the world bodies that sent them.
He said, “Well, at this point some of us will go back to our homes and we couldn’t go without coming to the State House here to thank the President and the Vice for the good work they have done. Because it is under their watch that this peaceful, transparent, credible elections has been happening and is natural they be congratulated for the work done so far.
“So, that is why we came to pay respect to the President, his vice more or less to ask leave to go. Of course leaving the rest of our observer team behind to see through the entire process hoping it will reach very successful conclusions so they make final reports to world”.
He the success of the polls was not a good omen only to Nigeria as a country, but to the entire west African region and to the African continent as a whole.
“Nigeria succeeding will be not only in Nigeria but to West Africa and to the continent, we will all be made proud of the success here achieved by Nigerians for themselves and for all of us”, Kuffour stated.
Noting, however, that it was not yet over until all the elections are conducted and the results collated and announced peacefully, he appealed to all Nigerians to continue in the manner they have conducted themselves so far to ensure that everything about the process ends successfully.
he said, “We have been in the country with our groups observing all over the country, now we have come to a point where from what we have seen, I’m sure you heard from some of us yesterday (Sunday) that the elections have been peaceful, transparent and credible up to yesterday.
“We appreciate the processes are not yet done till the results are declared. Then, of course, the aftermath of the declaration. But we have come this far and we wanted to give an interim reports to the authorities that mandated us to come and to the world and to Nigerians in particular, to let everybody know that Nigeria so far has been at peace with the process.
“So, we appeal to Nigeria to continue in this mood throughout the entire process. So that at the end of the day the people of Nigeria will be satisfied with themselves that they use the process to get the government they want and they deserve”.