“I have run a good race, I have finished my course. It is now time for another to take up the baton,’’ said President Muhammadu Buhari Thursday in Abuja, after the investiture of President-elect Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, and Vice President-elect, Kashim Shettima, with National Honours.
According to a statement by presidential spokesman, Femi Adesina, the investiture of the President-elect and Vice President-elect sets the pace for their swearing into office on Monday, May 29, 2023 of the duo, drawing a curtain on the eight-year administration of President Buhari, who served two terms, 2015-2023.
The President congratulated both political leaders, who had served as Governor of Lagos and Borno States, respectively.
“I extend my warmest congratulations to the President-elect, on his well-deserved victory at the February 25th, 2023 Presidential elections. The Nigerian people have recognized your leadership qualities, political acumen, and passion to serve our great nation, and have entrusted you with the burden of governing our beloved country.
“I have no doubt that Nigeria will continue to thrive and achieve new heights under your leadership. You were the best candidate at the elections and Nigerians have chosen wisely.
“I equally extend my congratulations to the Vice President-elect. Your wealth of experience in governance, your unwavering commitment to the well-being of the Nigerian people, and your exemplary leadership during challenging times as Governor of Borno State, have made you a deserving candidate for this position. I have full confidence that you will serve our nation with utmost dedication and integrity.
“In accordance with the Honours Award Act, 1963, Laws of Federation of Nigeria, (LFN), 2004, Presidents/Heads of State receive the Honour of Grand Commander of the Order of the Federal Republic (GCFR) while the Vice Presidents are awarded the Grand Commander of the Order of the Niger (GCON).
“Today, with the authority vested in me, as the President and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, I have conferred the National Honour of GCFR on His Excellency Bola Ahmed Tinubu and that of the GCON on His Excellency Kashim Shettima respectively.
“As we celebrate this auspicious occasion, let us not forget the immense responsibilities that come with leadership. The challenges facing our nation are significant, and it is the duty of the President and Vice President to address them with courage, wisdom, and compassion.
“We must remain committed to the principles of good governance, transparency, and accountability, as these are the foundations upon which our nation’s progress and development rely,’’ he added.
President Buhari noted that Asiwaju had the experience and capacity to lead the country, carrying on the legacy of his administration.
“President-elect, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, you have a long and illustrious track record of public service, marked by your exceptional achievements in various capacities. Your transformative leadership in Lagos State, where you left an indelible mark in the areas of infrastructure, education, healthcare, and economic development, speaks volumes about your dedication to the welfare of the Nigerian people.
President Buhari expressed his deepest gratitude to Nigerians for their unwavering support and trust throughout his tenure, adding “It has been an honour and a privilege to serve this great nation, and I am confident that Nigeria is in capable hands as we embark on this new chapter.’’
While examining some of the challenges before incoming administration, President Buhari advised Asiwaju Tinubu to lead the country with wisdom, courage, and compassion.