WASHINGTON, DC — Nigeria’s electoral commission has decided to postpone this month’s general election until March 28 due to security concerns, Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Chairman Attahiru Jega said at a press conference late on Saturday, promising to deliver free, fair and credible elections.
“The security agencies reiterated that they will be concentrating their attention to the insurgency and may not be able to play their traditional role in providing security during the elections,” Jega said. He explained that the commission is not a security agency and can therefore not guarantee the protection of staff members and observers.
As a result, the commission decided on Saturday to move presidential, Senate, and House elections to March 28, while state and local elections have been moved to April 11, Jega said. “We implore the security agencies to stick to their promise and commitment made to INEC,” the chairman added.
Incumbent President Goodluck Jonathan is seeking a second and final term and faces Muhammadu Buhari, who led the country in the early 1980s after a military coup. Buhari has been leading Jonathan in opinion polls.