2011 poll: Jonathan knocks former US envoy’s rigging claim

Former President  Goodluck Jonathan has lampooned a former United States Ambassador to Nigeria, John Campbell, over his reported claim that the 2011 presidential election he won was rigged.

Jonathan’s media spokesman, Ikechukwu Eze, in a statement titled on Sunday, ‘2011 elections and John Campbell’s distorted postulations,’ said the presidential election was not rigged, adding that Jonathan won the election in a credible, transparent, free and fair electoral process.

He noted that the 2011  presidential election was adjudged by both local and international observers including the Commonwealth Election Monitoring Group and even the US contingent of both the International Republican Institute and the National Democratic Institute, as the most credible and transparent election in Nigeria since the country returned to civil rule in 1999.

Eze also said the 2011 elections saw a 75 per cent reduction in election petition cases in Nigeria, adding that the United States Institute for Peace described the elections as the “best run” elections in Nigeria’s history.

He said, “Former President Jonathan is known for his ‘one man, one vote, one woman, one vote, one youth one vote’ policy. Before the 2011 elections, he said ‘my ambition is not worth the blood of any citizen’ and was indeed guided by that creed throughout the process. He is also on record to have publicly called on members of the Peoples Democratic Party not to even attempt to rig for him, stating that he was a pencil in God’s hands.

“There is no doubt that Nigerians above 45 years witnessed the past six presidential elections in the country — 1999, 2003, 2007, 2011, 2015 and 2019 — and are in a better position than Campbell to objectively appraise the processes.

 “Perhaps this is the time to remind Campbell and other wheeling and dealing consultants like him that Nigerians have placed the 2011 elections behind them and are no longer in a position to welcome those who have nothing but sophistry to offer our citizens! As our own inimitable Fela would say,  ‘Mr Teacher don’t teach us nonsense.”

Jonathan’s spokesman said  Campbell styled himself as a ‘Nigeria expert’ at the Council for Foreign Relations, but in truth, he was a figure of ridicule in Nigeria for his postulations, which he said, had repeatedly and consistently proved to be way off the mark.

He said, “How he can continue to make pretensions to be an expert on Nigeria, beats our imagination. Besides serving as a diplomat in his country’s embassy in our dear country, what other competencies does Campbell possess to qualify as a Nigeria expert?”

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