Nigeria presidential elections a success; preliminary report

According to News 24 report Nigeria’s presidential elections were successful amid fears of administrative setbacks and Islamist militants Boko Haram inflicting violence. 55 million people managed to cast their vote throughout the weekend.

Nigeria’s election proceedings were feared to be a failure when polls in some parts of the country faced electronic problems with card readers on Saturday.

Voting was administered using electronic card readers on permanent voters cards (PVC’s) and a fingerprint reader to check the biometric details of voters.

This process was meant to validate the votes and prevent fraudulent voting, which was a big problem for the country in past elections.

“There should have been a test-run for a smaller election before deploying it for an election of this magnitude,” Presidential campaign spokesperson Femi Fani-Kayode told the BBC.

The electoral commission reportedly postponed voting because of the electronic setbacks and voting continued to Sunday.

The votes of President Goodluck Jonathan and at least three governors had to be processed manually, as they were among those affected by the electronic malfunctions.

According to a spokesperson for the Independent National Electoral Commission (Inec), about 300 of the 150 000 polling units were affected.

Some people had to wait for seven to eight hours in the sun to exercise their democratic right to vote.

“This election is important, people are starting to ask questions of their government – we need to hold them accountable,” Ikeja accountant and tax practitioner, Akin Ojo, told CNN.

It’s expected to be a closely fought election between Jonathan of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP)and Progressives Congress (APC) leader Muhammadu Buhari.

The elections were almost deterred by violence where more than 20 people were killed by unidentified gunmen.

“The war against terrorists is going on, voting or no voting”, said Jonathan to the BBC.

The president added there was a clash between soldiers and Boko Haram fighters that had nothing to do with the elections.

The election results are expected to be announced in the next few days.

Nigeria is Africa’s largest economy leading in the production of oil, and Africa’s most populous nation, with more than 170 million people.