President Muhammadu Buhari has described the ruling of the presidential election petition tribunal on the February 23, 2019 poll, as a victory for Nigerians who trooped out to overwhelmingly elect him for a second term in office.
Speaking shortly after the tribunal upheld his victory, the president said he was not worried about the petition filed to challenge the outcome of the election because he knew that Nigerians elected him.
“Good conscience fears no evil report. I was unperturbed all along, because I knew Nigerians freely gave us the mandate. We are now vindicated,” Femi Adesina, presidential spokesman, quoted Buhari to have said.
Adesina said Buhari dedicated the victory to God, and to Nigerians, while also commending the judiciary for “dispensing justice without fear or favour.”
He said the president has extended a hand of fellowship to those who had felt aggrieved at the outcome of the election, and went to court, noting that it was within their democratic rights.
“It is time for the country to move forward as one cohesive body, putting behind us all bickering and potential distractions over an election in which Nigerians spoke clearly and resoundingly,” he was quoted to have said.
Atiku Abubakar, candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the election, had asked the tribunal to declare him winner, arguing that the election was rigged in favour of Buhari.
But at the tribunal, Mohammed Garba, the lead judge, said the PDP and Atiku failed to provide enough evidence to support the claims in the petition.