President Muhammadu Buhari on Saturday reiterated his commitment to free, fair, and credible 2023 general elections, urging citizens to exercise their civic rights and elect candidates of their choice.
The president made the remarks at the 42nd Convocation/Diamond Jubilee Ceremony of the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) on Saturday in Zaria.
Buhari, who is the Visitor to the university, was represented by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr. Boss Mustapha.
He said: “The general election is coming up in the next few weeks; I re-assure Nigerians and the international community of the commitments of the federal government on the free, fair, and credible election.’’
While noting that the Federal Government had made adequate arrangements for a credible election, Buhari urged Nigerians not to allow themselves to be used to cause trouble under any guise.
He said the law enforcement agencies were prepared to deal with those who caused trouble, stressing that: “Nigeria’s nascent democracy must be nurtured by all of us to make our country great.”
The president congratulated the graduands and distinguished Nigerians conferred with Honorary Doctorate Degrees.
Earlier, the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Kabiru Bala, said no fewer than 35,758 graduates of the 2018/2019 and 2019/2020 sessions were awarded first degrees, postgraduate diplomas, and higher degrees at the Diamond Jubilee Convocation.
Bala said of the 35,758 graduands, 8,842 bagged higher degrees, with 869 Ph.D.; 60 M.Phil.; 6,179 Masters Degrees; and 1,734 Postgraduate Diplomas.
He added that 26,916 received Bachelor’s Degrees out of which 273 had First Class, 5,647 Second Class Upper Division; 17,567 Second Class Lower Division, 2,899 Third Class Honours, 45 Pass degrees, and 485 unclassified degrees.
He said four outstanding personalities were conferred with the institution’s Honorary Doctorate Degrees for their immeasurable contributions to humanity.
“The Honorary Degree awardees include former military governor of old Kano State, Col. Sani Bello (Rtd), and Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations, Ms. Amina Mohammed.
“Others are former Bursar of Ahmadu Bello University, Muhammadu Inuwa-Jibo, and Katsina-based Philanthropist, Fatima Kurfi,” he said.
The vice-chancellor, however, said the Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations, Ms. Amina Mohammed, was unavoidably absent but would be conferred with the Honorary Degree at a later date.