The most expected day of the recent period has finally come: March 28, the day of presidential elections.
Millions of Nigerians are to go to the polling units to cast their votes for the candidate who will lead the country for the next 4 years.
Fourteen parties and presidential candidates are gunning for presidency.
The toughest competition will apparently take place between President Goodluck Jonathan, running on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party, and Muhammadu Buhari, representing the All Progressives Congress.
Both candidates yesterday arrived in their hometowns for the historical event in the political life of Nigeria.
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13:17 Elections staff explain to US Ambassador to Nigeria James F. Entwistle and US assistant secretary of state Linda Thomas-Greenfield the malfunctioning card readers.
13:07 Some Kaduna state voters who registered to cast their votes in places away from their residences were stopped by the police from going to the polling units. The police spokesman promised to sort out the misunderstanding (PT).
13:05 INEC officials at Gbagada unit 001 and 062, Lagos, refuse to manually accredit voters despite failure of card readers (Vanguard).
12:57 BBC Africa reports with reference to Transitional Monitoring Group that 68% of polling units in Nigeria opened by 11:30. When the scheduled opening time was 8:00.
12:50 Again, issues with the card readers. This time the machine refused to capture biometrics of Plateau state Governor Jonah Jang and his wife Talatu. The politician commented: “I am disappointed in the process, since the card reader can reject the number one citizen of the state.”
12:30 At least 2 people killed in a suspected Boko Haram attack on polling stations in the villages of Birin Bolawa and Birin Fulani in the Nafada district of Gombe state (Vanguard). An anonymous election official commented: “We could hear the gunmen shouting, ‘Didn’t we warn you about staying away from (the) election?’”
12:19 INEC say they are aware of the cyber attack. Currently investigating the incident.
12:00 Photo of a 117-year-old voter at Yahaya Umar polling unit, Gombe state, goes viral!
11:56 Unconfirmed information about unrest in Gombe, with one person killed.
11:48 INEC website was hacked by Nigeri Cyber Army (NCA)
11:44 Jonathan addresses people for the second time, after having been accredited without the card reader
11:33 Nobel Prize laureate Wole Soyinka going through the accreditation in Ogun state
11:30 According to the Twitter handle of the NBA Lawyers-Nigeria, there was “heavy shooting in Ekiti Oke Osun ward, Ikire Ekiti, over argument between Deputy Gov and a Party Agent. A security and a Voter badly wounded.”
11:25 Nigeria’s former president Olusegun Obasanjo accredited at Ward 11, Unit 22 Totoro/Sokori, Abeokuta North.
10:35 BREAKING: Despite previous updates that Jonathan was accredited, the freshest news suggest that three voter card readers have yet failed to read President Goodluck Jonathan’s biometrics and accredit him.
10:33 People displaced by Boko Haram are voting in Maiduguri camps
10:11 Soldiers reportedly barricaded the Abuja-Kuje road turning back journalists and observers heading to the town. A witness said even European Union observers were blocked at a military checkpoint at Dantata on the way to Kuje. One of the locked journalists said he has information that some ruling party politicians plot to rig in the town (Premium Times).
10:07 Speaking about accreditation problems, Jonathan said:
“I am not worried that CardReader did not work well we have to be patient with the INEC.”
10:00 Kaduna state governorship candidate Nasir El-Rufai heading to his polling unit to cast a vote.
9:55 ANOTHER explosion is said to have taken place in Anambra state. Luckily, no casualties. Details not clear.
9:44 @nkemifejika tweets: “Water & ‘omo’ recommended. Card reader friendlier to clean hands. Apparently.”
9:40 Finally, done! The accreditation process accreditation took at least 6 minutes at the card reader stage. Based on the social media mesages, it all went quicker with Buhari.
9:37 Seems like GEJ still can’t complete the accreditation. Why is that?
9:23 Goodluck and Patience Jonathan being accredited in Otuoke, Bayelsa state.
9:20 BREAKING: A car bomb exploded at the WTC Primary School polling booth in Enugu North LGA at about 7:38 Saturday (The Advocate). No casualty recorded. The experts dismantled the second bomb which was timed to explode during the voting and detonated it at 8:45. As shocking as it might be, there was a third device which detonated at 9:05. Screening in progress.
9:15 @shile_02holly posted a photo accompanied by the caption “Dis policemen just seized a PVC frm a man!”
9:05 A voter in wheelchair displays his voters card after completing his accreditation at Ido-Osi in Ifaki local government, Ekiti (PT).
8:45 Muhammadu Buhari, and his wife Aisha have been accredited in his hometown Daura, Katsina state.
8:40 Nigerians report that accreditation successfully commences in polling units around 8:00. See the messages dropped from across Lagos. However, in some areas there area delays For example, at Iworoko Ekiti, Irepodun Ifelodun LGA, and in Oyi LGA, Anambra state, voters are waiting for the arrival of INEC officials and materials.
8:27 Another angle. One of the users, @codegidi, compares the road view with the “war zone”.
8:15 Oshodi-Apapa Expressway by Sanya b/s with no vehicular movement (7:11, reported by @ksa0510.
7:55 Wow! Google Doodle of the day celebrates the Nigerian elections. Check it out below:
7:43 @AriyoAristotle shares: “On Election Duty in Lagos. I can tell you that the security is very tight.”
7:30 Security agencies have embarked on various measures to ensure safe polls in the 36 states.
7:00 Many social media users are already tweeting that they have arrived at the polling units early morning. People are praying for peaceful polls and even wishing each other a happy voting. The issue of security is of top importance because of Boko Haram activities and the political violence in the past.
Facts about the elections:
- There are 14 presidential candidates, but is ultimately expected to be a race between the top candidates, incumbent President Goodluck Jonathan (People’s Democratic Party, PDP) and former president Muhammadu Buhari (All Progressives Party, APC) .
- The elections were initially scheduled to take place on February 14, 2015. Nigeria’s Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) rescheduled the elections to March 28, saying that the country did not have adequate security measures in place to tackle possible election violence or attacks from the Islamist militant group Boko Haram
- Polling stations were officially due to open at 8:00 a.m. to verify voter cards and conduct security checks. Voting is due to begin at 1:30 p.m. local Nigerian time (GMT+1) and end when the last person has casts their vote.