Nigeriathe most populous country in Africa and its main producer of Petroleumwill elect its next president this Saturday in its seventh general election since the restoration of democracy in 1999, in the midst of a growing discontent by unsafety and the economic inequality.
something more than 93.4 million registered voters They are called to choose the substitute for the outgoing president, Muhammadu Buhariwho is not seeking re-election because he is running out of the second consecutive four-year term allowed by the Constitution.
These are the keys to follow the elections:
1. The main presidential candidates.
eighteen candidates They participate in the presidential race, but only three have a real chance of winning, according to the polls: Tinubu Ball, Atiku Abubakar and peter obi.
Tinubu70 years old and government candidate Congress of All Progressives (APC), has been at the center of an intense electoral campaign to regain the popularity of his party, deteriorated by growing insecurity, high unemployment rates, especially among young people, or economic inequality.
For his part, Abubakar76 years old and candidate for the first opposition force, the Democratic Party of the Peoples (PDP), is an experienced politician who became Vice President (1999-2007) and is running for the Presidency for the sixth time.
The youngest of the three is Obia recognized Businessman 61 years old and leader of the Labor Partywho describes himself as an alternative to the bipartisanship that has dominated national politics since 1999.
His speeches attract many young voters – in a country where the average age is 18 yearsthis may be vital to winning an election – but, unlike his two main opponents, he does not have the support of an influential political party apparatus and his level of popularity in rural areas is still unclear.
2. Requirements to win the presidential elections.
The next president of Nigeria must get, apart from a majority of the votes, more than one quarter of the votes issued in at least two-thirds of the country’s 36 states.
If no candidate meets these conditions, the elections will be repeated within 21 days with the two applicants who have garnered the most votes.
3. Insecurity and economic inequality, major electoral issues.
The unsafety worries many Nigerians. The jihadist violence It has been a great challenge for the Buhari government, which came to power in 2015 when the jihadist group boko haram controlled a territory in northeastern Nigeria the size of Belgium.
Since 2015, Boko Haram and its spin-off, the Islamic State in West Africa Province (ISWAP), have lost many territories to the Nigerian Army, but are still active.
Likewise, the central and north-western states of Nigeria suffer constant attacks from “bandits”, a term used to name criminal gangs who commit mass robberies, robberies and kidnappings for lucrative ransoms.
Added to this problem is the devaluation of the nairaa runaway inflation and the high unemploymentdespite the fact that Nigeria stands out as the main oil producer on the continent.
Organizations like oxfam warn that the inequality economy of Nigeria, Africa’s largest economy, reaches “extreme levels”.
Currently, four out of ten Nigerians (about 83 million people) live by below the poverty lineaccording to the World Bank.
4. Innovations to prevent electoral manipulation
Nigeria will use for the first time in general elections innovations such as the biometric recognition of voters wave electronic transmission of results of the polling stations.
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) assures that this new system will prevent the manipulation of the results, but regrets that the sanctions against politicians who try to buy votes are still “too weak”.
Some INEC headquarters have also been attacked during the electoral campaign.
For isaac olawaleProfessor of Peace and Conflict at the University of Ibadan (Southwest), one of the most prestigious in Nigeria, this “atmosphere of violence” poses a “great danger” for the country’s democracy, restored in 1999 after the military dictatorships that they prevailed since 1966, with the democratic parenthesis of 1979-1983.
“Nigeria it is a key country You can’t afford to fail,” he said. “The country must demonstrate once again that it is a champion of democracy on the continent, guaranteeing a peaceful transition.”
5. What else is voted on next Saturday?
Nigerians also elect the legislators of the National Assembly: 109 members of the Senate (Upper House) and 360 members of the House of Representatives (Lower House).
(With information from EFE)
Nigeria Holds Elections Amid Great Insecurity, Economic Challenges