With federal elections scheduled in February 2015, U.S. Ambassador James Entwistle has challenged politicians to publicly take the non-violence pledge now, before, during, and after the 2015 elections.
Ambassador Entwistle spoke February 9, when he paid a courtesy visit to the Zamfara State Governor Abdul Aziz Yari Abubakar at the Government House in Gusau. In the full complement of the state executive and legislative members, Ambassador Entwistle said: “As 2015 draws to a close, one thing I urge you to begin to take now, as politicians, is a public pledge of non-violence.” He noted that one of the most import elements of a democracy is elections. He assured listeners that the United States was ready to stand with Nigeria and was looking forward to credible, transparent, free, and fair elections in 2015 that Nigerians need and deserve.
Ambassador Entwistle also noted that the U.S. Mission in Nigeria has been active in Zamfara State through the United States Agency for International Development and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) in helping the state deal with issues of lead poisoning arising from illegal mining and in PEPFAR supported HIV/AIDS health programs.
Before leaving Zamfara for Sokoto in continuation of his familiarization tour of Nigeria, Ambassador Enstwistle took a tour of some facilities in the state, including a visit to the Sharia Court of Appeal and the Zamfara State Radio and Television Service. At the television station, he spoke to the people of Zamfara in a live television interview.