– ‘My heart and my door are open to you’
– Says losing not reason for despair
The President-Elect, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu has asked Nigerians to bury political and other divides to work with him in building a greater country.
Speaking after he and the Vice President-elect, Senator Kashim Shettima, received certificates of return from the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Wednesday afternoon, Tinubu said politics must give way for nation-building.
Tinubu said his victory should not be seen as personal, emphasising that for progress to be made all Nigerians must undertake to be part of the task ahead.
“To you the people, especially the youths, I will work day and night. I will work to the utmost of my ability to make Nigeria better.
“For this to be a victory at all, it cannot simply be a victory for one man or even one party. It must become a victory for all Nigerians who are committed to a greater society.
“I know many did not vote for me. And you are disappointed that your candidate is not where I now stand.
“I understand your hurt. To you, I extend the embrace and comfort of one family member to another.
“This great project called Nigeria beckons to us all. It is bigger and more important than any partisan divide.”
The President-Elect urged his supporters and counseled those Nigerians whose candidate missed the opportunity of winning this time not to stop being patriotic citizens.
“I ask that you not to allow the disappointment of this moment to keep you from realizing the historic national progress we can make by joining hands and hearts in common endeavor to pull this nation through,” he said.
Reflecting on the race, Asiwaju Tinubu said: “The road has been long. Yet, we walked it. The battle has been hard fought. Yet, we won it.
“But more importantly, I realize that I am just a servant of a larger purpose. You see, this is more than a document confirming the positive outcome of an election.
“This important document symbolizes our collective democratic attainment and even loftier aspirations. It represents the impending transfer of a most sacred duty and trust from one person to another.
“At its most sublime, this certificate also symbolizes that each of you has the ability to achieve what others believe is impossible for you to achieve.”
While paying tribute to the Nigerian youths, Tinubu charged them to keep hope alive and work hard for personal and national growth.
“Very soon, this nation shall witness a young person standing before you holding this great symbol of democracy and national leadership. We shall see a woman standing before you, holding this certificate as its owner. We shall experience someone from a tribe that many people have tried to dismiss as unqualified for this high office.
“By dint of hard work, determination and unyielding belief in a noble endeavor, you can achieve the best of things.
“There are young people listening to me right now who shall one day be the leaders of our precious and exceptional democratic republic.”