President Muhammadu Buhari has asked Independent National Electoral Commission to allow the will of Nigerians prevail in all elections by ensuring free, fair and credible polls.
Mr Buhari also directed Inspector-General of Police, Mr Mohammed Adamu, to provide adequate security for the forthcoming polls, warning security agencies not to interfere with the electoral process.
The President gave the directives when he met with Chairman of INEC, Mr Mahmood Yakubu, and the IG at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, on Tuesday.
The electoral umpire will conduct up to 28 elections this month across the country, comprising runoffs and by-elections.
In Kano State alone, a former Leader of House of Representatives, Mr Alhassan Ado-Doguwa, whose election was cancelled by the Court of Appeal, will go for a repeat poll against his Peoples Democratic Party opponent.
A former Chairman, House Committee on Appropriation, Mr Abdulmumin Jibrin, also has a repeat election this month, ordered by the court.
Buhari asked INEC and the police to remain impartial.
“Those that you declare as winners must be the candidates that the people have chosen. Democracy is about free will, and the will of the people must be allowed to prevail,” statement by Buhari’s media aide, Mr Femi Adesina, quoted the President as saying.
“Get your acts right, and leave no room for underhand tricks or manipulation.”
He added, “Our elections must be done in violence-free atmosphere. The process must be free, fair, decent, devoid of intimidation or malpractices.
“It is the duty of the police to accomplish that, and it is what I expect in the elections immediately ahead, and going forward.”
Yakubu told State House Correspondents after the meeting, “We have 28 elections outstanding, spread across 11 states. The commission has already fixed January 25 for the conduct of the court-ordered reruns and we are ready for these elections.”
Adamu said arrangements were in place to ensure that acts of violence did not disrupt the elections.