President Muhammadu Buhari has told leaders of the All Progressives Congress and the Peoples Democratic Party that the country needs vibrant but responsible opposition for democracy to fluorish.
He noted that opposition should not be mistaken for enmity or antagomism.
The President said this in a meeting with the party leaders in the State House, Abuja on Friday.
The APC delegation was led by the party’s National Chairman, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun; while the Chairman of the PDP’s Caretaker Committee, Ahmed Makarfi, led the opposition party’s delegation to the meeting.
President Buhari described the visit by the two main political parties as signifying the unity of the country.
The President noted that a democracy needs a vibrant but responsible opposition, adding that opposition does not translate to hostility and antagonism.
He thanked all Nigerians for praying for his recovery and asked them to continue to pray for the peace and prosperity of the country.
“I thank you sincerely, collectively and individually for finding time from your busy schedules to come all the way to Abuja and welcome me back home.
This visit signifies the unity of Nigeria. It is not a party occasion. It is not a political gathering. It is a symbol of our National unity. It is also an expression of the maturity of our democracy.
Multi-party democracy is a very tried and tested form of government. Opposition does not mean hostility, enmity or antagonism. Democracy needs opposition, one which is vibrant but responsible.
I am very pleased to see you assembled here all shades of opinion in Nigeria. Please convey to our countrymen and women in your respective states my deep gratitude to all those who prayed for my recovery. I am imploring all Nigerians to continue praying for peace and prosperity in Nigeria.
I thank you so much God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria,” the President said.
In his speech, Makarfi promised that the PDP will continue to support the President in his bid to move the nation forward.