Nigeria Election 2019: Days of reckoning for Buhari, Atiku, Nigeria
London, Feb. 23, 2019 (AltAfrica)- After months of political campaigns and last minutes postponement, Nigeria is on the match again. Nigerian in 36 states of the federation will today elect a new president and members of the federal legislature to pilot the affairs of the country for the next four years. At long last the days of reckoning are here.
Today and the next few days for counting and declaration of results would indeed be reckoning for president Muhammadu Buhari of the ruling All Progressive Congress, APC party who could be returned to power or be sent back to his ranches in Daura, same faith awaits one of Nigeria’s most nomadic politician, Atiku Abubakar of the main opposition party, the peoples’ Democratic Party, PDP
For Nigeria and Nigerians, it’s a crucial day (S) in the life of a nation and people held hostage by a group of professional political elites and their corporate collaborators with no other mission other than personal. Today, it is either the shackles of bondage are broken or re-locked. Unfortunately, it is a familiar terrain, a mistake so commonly made
On the 20th anniversary of the election that returned Nigeria to Democracy in 1999, the country is again at a crossroads.
Nigeria has never been this divided as citizens file out today to elect a President that will run the country for another four years, effective May 29.
The 2019 general elections will be the largest single-day peacetime logistics and security undertaking by the commission since 1999, with over 72 million voters, 91 political parties and 23,213 candidates vying for 1,558 positions, involving over 814,000 electoral officials.
The head of the ECOWAS Election Observation Mission (EOM) and former president of Liberia, Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf has assured Nigeria of the support of the entire nations of Africa, as the country goes to polls today to elect a new leader for the next four years.
Johnson-Sirleaf, who addressed a news conference in Abuja yesterday, said that ECOWAS watched with keen interest the manner in which both INEC and the populace handled the issue of the postponement.
She commended Nigerians for the patience and calm exhibited up till now, stating that the progress made by the commission signalled a “deepening and building of confidence in the electoral processes.”
The former Liberia President urged Nigerians, particularly the political class to sustain the peace that characterised the postponement of the Presidential and National Assembly Election and also conduct themselves according to the laws of the land, as they go to the polls today.
“We extend thanks, admiration and gratitude to the Nigerian people for their patience in the face of the last minute interruptions to their lives with the postponement of the 2019 general elections.
“We have watched the progress of INEC over the past week working together with domestic and international partners in addressing their logistical and technical challenges.
“We commend our brothers and sisters across the length and breadth of this great country for remaining calm and resilient as these concerns were addressed.”
Johnson-Sirleaf described the signing of the 2019 Peace Accord by the various political gladiators as a further demonstration of the commitment of Nigeria to democracy.
She expressed confidence that the same level of maturity would be demonstrated during the remaining phase of the electoral process.
Johnson-Sirleaf and many other international observers and those keenly watching with deep and personal interest can only wish Nigeria well, the ways and manner to do that remain with Nigerians .
It is a day of reckoning. Except the unusual happens, four years is a dam to long a time for another suffering. Best of luck Nigerians