President Goodluck Jonathan has once again called on the political class to avoid actions and utterances that are capable of derailing the democratic process ahead of the 2015 general elections.
The President noted that politics can only be done when there is a country and where there is peace.
Speaking at an inter- party forum at the International Conference Centre, Abuja, the President recalled the way and manner Nigerian political parties had formed alliances in the past in order to form government and confront the challenges bedeviling the nation.
He therefore urged the present political class to also stick together in order to be able to forge a united front against the deadly Boko Haram scourge and other challenges.
He opined that an atmosphere of bitterness and rancour, caused by inflammatory comments cannot foster the kind of development which Nigerian people are yearning for.
“Such unguarded utterances on their part fester the embers of discord, bitterness and rancour. Such unfortunate development play into the hands of extremist elements waging a vicious campaign of terror against the state. The recent mindless bombings and killings of innocent Nigerians in the FCT, Jos, the killings in Adamawa state including that of the traditional rulers as well as the heartless criminal abduction of over 200 school girls from Chibok, are better addressed by a political class united in its commitment to defend the polity irrespective of political differences.
“We must never politicize the fundamentals and core imperatives of defending the state as to do so can only embolden the terrorists and other enemies of our republics who will seek to employ any perceived political and social division for their nefarious ends.
“We must never give them such opportunity. Our political parties must remain positive and constructive in their engagements as we seek to build virile and stable nation that can compete with other states in the world,” the President said.
According to Jonathan, the summit which was attended by former leaders, ruling party chieftains and key opposition figures was an opportunity for all stakeholders with different ideologies to point to the way forward for the nation.
He noted that it would also give politicians the opportunity to assess the impact of their recent utterances on the polity and make necessary adjustments.
He continued: “This summit today, attended by all political parties in Nigeria therefore offers the opportunities for political parties and indeed politicians to reflect and review the possible consequences their actions, conducts and utterances in the recent past have had and will have on our polity and corporate existence.
“This summit must be an occasion for political rejuvenation and re-orientation, its outcome must be a common stand against all and any anti-democratic forces that are currently waging vicious and mindless war against the state.
“Fellow compatriots, we must first build a nation before engaging in arguments on how best to run it. The system is not yet strong enough to withstand all unguarded and careless political statements and actions.”
President Jonathan commended the presence and active participation of opposition leaders in the forum.
He said: “I must express my profound gratitude to all the political parties that answered this clarion call today. For General Buhari, has indeed demonstrated statesmanship and patriotism as well as the willingness to put partisanship aside in the collective interest of the nation.
I sincerely hope that the summit will mark a turning point in our democratization process,” he added.