President Goodluck Jonathan has said that he quickly accepted defeat in the last Presidential election even before final results were called to save the nation from crisis.
The President said this when he received members of the African Ambassadors Group who paid him a farewell visit in the State House yesterday.
“I have been involved in solving many problems in African countries for more than five years and I know the enormity and cost of conflicts, especially on the citizenry. We cannot afford that in Nigeria.
“If we were to have a political conflict in Nigeria, I am not sure the sub-region will be able to accommodate our citizens. My commitment is to always put the country before my personal ambition and that is what I have demonstrated,’’ he said.
“I believe that character matters in leadership. And it is not just about who becomes the president of a country, but somebody has to be there and the person needs the support of all to succeed. I made a choice to keep the country away from conflict.
“I have always advised other African leaders that we will need to have a country before we can have the ambition to become presidents. We don’t have to expose our people to deaths because we want to stay in power. Some people hold on to power, may be, for fear of the unknown,’’ the President added.
President Jonathan also called on the global community and Nigerians to support the incoming government of President-elect Muhammadu Buhari.
The President recalled working extensively for more than five years with other African Presidents to forestall crisis in some African countries, especially in the West African sub-region, and also leading peace efforts in some of the countries like Cote ‘d’Ivoire, Mali and Guinea Bissau.
“In his remarks, the Dean of Diplomatic Corps in Nigeria and , His Excellency Oubi Bochir, commended President Jonathan’s statesmanship and transparency in the last general elections, saying that he won the heart and minds of all Nigerians and Africans after the elections.
Mr. Bochir, who is the Ambassador of Saharawi Arab Democratic Republic, SADR, to Nigeria, extolled President Jonathan for making a single phone call that saved the country from political conflict, restored confidence in African democracy and left a benchmark for other countries to follow.
The Dean of the Diplomatic Corps was accompanied on the visit by eight other Ambassadors from Cameroon, Liberia, Equatorial Guinea, Kenya, South Africa, South Sudan, Namibia and Ethiopia.

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