Nigeria has recently held its presidential and parliamentary elections, but it was not without its hiccups. Voters reported long delays, technical issues, and logistical problems, which caused widespread frustration. According to official results, President Muhammadu Buhari of the All Progressives Congress (APC) won the presidential election with over 15 million votes. His closest challenger, Atiku Abubakar of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), received slightly more than 11 million votes.
The election was largely peaceful, and international observers declared it credible. However, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) was criticized for its poor organization. The commission had promised to have polls open by 8 a.m., but many polling units opened late, sometimes by several hours. In some cases, voting materials did not arrive until the afternoon.
The delays were attributed to a variety of factors. INEC blamed the late arrival of electoral materials on bad weather. However, some have suggested that the commission was unprepared and not properly equipped. In some areas, there were reports of ballot boxes being tampered with and voter intimidation.
The long delays also caused some voters to leave without casting their ballots. In an effort to make up for the delays, INEC extended voting by one day in some areas. However, this did not solve the problem and some areas still had to close polls early due to a lack of materials. Despite the delays and technical issues, the election was seen as largely peaceful and credible. The results have been accepted by the main opposition party and international observers. This is a positive step for Nigeria, which has faced challenges in previous elections.
The election is seen as a major achievement for Nigeria, as it displayed a commitment to democracy and holding free and fair elections. However, it is clear that the commission must take steps to ensure that future elections are better organized and that all citizens have an opportunity to exercise their right to vote. Only then will Nigeria be able to truly make progress in its democratic development.