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European Union (EU) has reacted to the comments by the Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, about foreign interference in the general elections.

European Union (EU) has reacted to the comments by the Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, about foreign interference in the general elections.


Governor El-Rufai in an interview on NTA's Tuesday Live had said that those who attempt to interfere in the internal affairs of the country would return to their countries in body bags. Reacting in a statement issued on Wednesday, the Press Secretary to the EU Observer Mission, Sarah Fradgley, explained that the EU does not interfere in elections but rather analyzes and makes suggestions.
Fradgley said, “The EU election observation missions give commentary and analysis and make recommendations about the electoral process. “EU election observation missions are impartial, do not interfere in the electoral process, and operate according to a strict code of conduct”.
Read the EU's full statement below: We are aware of the comments by the Governor of Kaduna about non-interference by foreigners during a talk show on the elections Tuesday 5 February. The EU only deploys an election observation mission when it is invited to do so by the authorities of a country.
The EU has been invited to observe all of the general elections in Nigeria since 1999. Thus this is the sixth time the EU is observing elections in Nigeria.
The Independent National Electoral Commission invited the EU to deploy an observation mission for the 2019 general elections. The mission looks at all aspects of the election, including the campaign tone, the transparency of the election administration, the neutrality of security forces, and the independence of the judiciary. Presidency has advised Nigerians not to have disquiet feelings over the statement made by the governor of Kaduna state, Malam Nasir El-Rufai, declaring that the governor's statement was made for the interest of the country.
Elrufai was captured on a national television, NTA, warning foreigners from interfering in Nigeria's forthcoming elections. He argued that having gained independence in 1960, Nigeria is old enough as a country, to conduct a free, fair and credible elections come February 16th. Elrufai therefore, warned that those who would intervene would go home in body-bags. Giving different interpretations to his statement, Nigerians in what can be described as a supersonic reaction lashed and criticized the governor and called on US, EU to place Elrufai on a travel ban while the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) threatened to pull out of the peace accord signed by the political parties ahead of the election.
Reacting, the Presidency through Garba Shehu, presidential spokesman averred that, “We have taken note of the clarification to a reported statement made by the Governor of Kaduna State, Nasir El-Rufa'i, concerning opposition call for foreign interference in our domestic affairs and to say that latest statements by him should rest the issue for good.
“There is nothing more to sneeze at. The governor spoke strongly in defence of national interest. It is clear that El-Rufa'i, our party the All Progressives Congress, and all its candidates have reposed their faith in democracy through general elections. It's immoral to change Delta power sharing pact for Ogboru—Izoukumor. “They are all of the view that there is no place for violence against local people or foreign citizens in our midst. The Federal Government under President Muhammadu Buhari will cooperate with election observers and will not let the international community down in the conduct of the coming elections. “The Presidency assures Nigerians and the international community that the President will do everything within his power to ensure free, fair and credible elections in the country.”

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