Nigeria’s 2023 Presidential Election Important To International Community, Says South Korean Envoy

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INEC Adhoc staff during voting

The Ambassador of the Republic of Korea to Nigeria, Kim Young-Chae, has asked Nigerians to ensure that the country’s 2023 presidential election is free and fair.

He noted that the entire world is monitoring the electoral process in Nigeria and is desirous of the success of the 2023 General Election, for the country occupies an important position.

Kim, while speaking during a press conference in Abuja to highlight activities of the embassy in the past year, said he was aware the presidential election will hold early next year.

He added that the election was very important to the Nigerian Government, to the Nigerian people and to the world as well.

Nigeria, the Republic of Korea envoy further said, is the biggest democracy and the largest economy in Africa, “so, Nigeria means a lot, not only to this region but globally. So, we want to see the election process, first should be peaceful; peaceful without violence. It should be free and fair and it should be transparent,” Kim said.

Kim further said the media have the responsibility to guide the government and the people towards a direction of peaceful, free, fair and transparent elections.

He added that: “It is very important and I hope that it will happen, the democratic tradition from 1999. Nigeria has been a democratic country. So, democratic practice, rules, I think are deeply established.

“Like Korea, in the next election, we should respect the result and cooperate with the new president.”

He said despite the debilitating effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Republic of Korea and Nigeria achieved a lot.

In the area of economic cooperation, he recalled the three years legal dispute regarding a shipyard in Lagos, near Apapa Port, between Samsung and LADOL, a Nigerian company.

Kim however said both parties, with the intervention of the Federal Government, have agreed to settle the dispute.

He also said it was expected that the shipyard will be in full operation this year and it is expected to employ more Nigerian engineers.

Kim equally said when fully operational, the shipyard intended to hire up to 3000 Nigerian engineers.

“It is quite a huge boost for Nigerian job creation. And of course, if their activities increased, they will pay more tax, more fees, et cetera. So, it is good for the Nigerian economy, and of course, it is good for Korean companies. It is one of the good achievements of our embassy as we also helped to mediate between Samsung and LADOL.”

Another major achievement mentioned by Kim was the commissioning of the NLNG Train 7 Gas Plant by President Muhammadu Buhari involving Daewoo, a South Korean company in order to boost Nigeria’s gas production.

In the area of political affairs, Kim recalled the joint bilateral commission that took place in South  Korea whereby the Minister of State, Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Zubairu Dada, visited South Korea and met his counterpart.

He also said 30 Nigerian government officials and some companies such as BUA, Oando, LADOL, amongst others, visited South Korea and met their counterparts on how to further the bilateral relations between South Korea and Nigeria.

Other areas listed by Kim included culture where both countries signed a memorandum of understanding; and exchanges in defence cooperation.

A coalition of Christians of northern extraction in All Progressives Congress (APC) on Thursday asked that the position of the Deputy National Chairman, North of the party should be left to a Northern Christian to occupy.

The Coalition stated this in a communique issued at the end of the expanded meeting of its executive committee and some select stakeholders. The Communique was signed by Chairman, Communique Drafting Committee, Prof. Doknan Sheni and Senator John Danboyi.

The group had in recent times been clamouring for religious consideration in sharing of positions in the party National Working Committee ahead of the national convention.

The APC National Convention comes up on 25th March 2022, where a new leadership that will direct the affairs of the party is expected to emerge.

The coalition while demanding adherence to the party’s procedures in the election of its national officers, they argued that such zoning considerations would help foster national unity.

The coalition stated: “Following the reports that a consensus candidate is recommended for the geopolitical zone; The executive Committee and some critical adoption at the forthcoming National convention of our great party, APC, stakeholders of APC Christians in the 19 Northern States met on 7th the position of Deputy National Chairman (North) to the North-East based on the recommendation of the zoning committee, decided as follows:

“To congratulate Mr. President and the entire APC family on the forthcoming National Convention.

“Further to the resolution contained in our communique of 13th February calling for religious balance and all-inclusiveness in

the leadership of the party, we recommend a Christian be Chairman (North) in the forthcoming National Convention.”

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