Nigerian presidential election delayed due to security concerns

(Photo: Uwais Abubakar Idris/DW)

Saturday's presidential election in Nigeria, the most populous nation in Africa, was significantly postponed due to the extreme security situation in numerous sections of the country.

Many hours after polling booths closed at 2:30 p.m. (1330 GMT), thousands of voters waited nationwide to cast ballots.

The Independent National Electoral Commission of Nigeria, or INEC, said that specific polling sites would also open on Sunday morning, which was not originally scheduled. At other locations, counting had already begun. Initial results are anticipated to be released as early as Sunday at noon.

INEC attributed some of the delays to security concerns for poll workers.

Security worries overshadowed the weeks preceding the election. In northern Nigeria, armed militias are active, including Islamic terrorist groups like Boko Haram.

Criminal gangs, deadly land disputes, and separatist fighting in the southeast cause instability.

With a record number of registered voters, Saturday's elections were delayed in various sections of the continent's most populous nation with 220 million citizens. According to media and observers, many of the 177,000 polling booths did not open as scheduled.

A record-breaking 87 million individuals were registered to vote and had obtained their voter identification cards. In addition to the presidency, more than 400 parliamentary seats are up for grabs.

80-year-old President Muhammadu Buhari is leaving office after two mandates.

With Nigeria's return to democracy in 1999, this was the first time a third party had a chance in addition to the candidates of the two leading parties.

Bola Tinubu, 70, of the ruling party, All Progressives Congress, or APC, and former vice president Atiku Abubakar, 76, of the Peoples Democratic Party, or PDP, who is running for the sixth time, are the most promising of the 18 candidates.

Peter Obi, 61, of the Labour Party is likewise well-liked, particularly in metropolitan cities and among young people. Thus, a presidential runoff looks imminent.

Publish : 2023-02-26 09:51:00

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