United States congressman, Chris Smith has blamed the postponement of the Nigeria’s general election on President Muhammadu Buhari and those who surround him.
In a letter written to President Buhari, Smith urged the president to ensure that the 2019 elections do not fall below the 2015 benchmark.
Smith now the ranking Republican in the House sub-committee on Africa was the chairman of the sub-committee until the recent takeover of the House by the Democratic Party.
Speaking on the postponement, Smith said, “Responsibility for the delay of Nigeria’s presidential election lays squarely with President Muhammadu Buhari and those close to him. Actions in advance of the election — including removal of Supreme Court Chief Justice Walter Onnoghen and arson attacks on Independent National Electoral Commission offices in opposition strongholds — are undermining confidence that this election and subsequent gubernatorial elections will be free and fair.
At a minimum, the presidential election must meet the 2015 standard, which saw a peaceful transfer of power and a statement by the then-sitting president that all bloodshed must be avoided.” “In addition to being sub-Saharan Africa’s most populous nation, Nigeria is its biggest economy, and what happens in Nigeria has ramifications beyond its borders,” Smith said.