Nigerian Presidential election postponed; Buhari disappointed, people angry

After long election campaign the Nigerians were finally looking ahead to cast their votes and elect their next president, but early Saturday when people woke up the breaking news was disappointing. The presidential and parliamentary elections were postponed abruptly, just few hours before the voting to start.

The polls are now rescheduled and to take place on February 23. It was surprising news for the people as earlier this month the chairman of the country’s Independent National Electoral Commission said he could not foresee any possibility postponement.

President Muhammadu Buhari said he was deeply disappointed with the news. He is currently in his hometown in Daura where he had traveled to cast his vote.

In a statement the president added, “INEC themselves have given assurances, day after day and almost hour after hour that they are in complete readiness for the elections.”

Meanwhile, social media has been flooded with anger by Nigerians and one of the tweets read, “Do they take us as jokes, some people canceled their weddings, parties, some even flew in just for election, goodness gracious, who did we offend in this country?”

Many people walked towards the polling stations Saturday morning to cast their votes. Several Nigerians slept overnight at the booths to beat the crowd. Some of the schools were closed for a week for security reasons and several businesses were shut down too.

Curfew was imposed on Saturday, the Election Day, and heavy traffic was seen on Friday evening in Lagos as people were out to stock up food and other necessary items.

Paul Linus