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Nigeria News Alert

Nigeria: Gubernatorial elections March 9 /update 5

Nationwide gubernatorial elections set for March 9; heightened security measures and associated violence possible in the coming days

07 Mar 03:29 PM UTC
TIMEFRAME expected from 3/7/2019, 12:00 AM until 3/11/2019, 11:59 PM (Africa/Lagos). COUNTRY/REGION Nigeria
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Event

The final round of gubernatorial elections will be held throughout Nigeria on Saturday, March 9. Voters will elect governors and members of the state houses of assembly. Heightened security measures are expected throughout the country and around polling stations, particularly on Saturday and the following days as results are announced. Political tensions remain high across Nigeria and electoral-related violence is likely, particularly in Rivers, Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Imo, Kaduna, and Kano states.

Militant groups active in the region, including Boko Haram and Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP), have threatened to disrupt the elections by conducting attacks on Nigerian security forces and infrastructure, as well as public gathering places such as markets, hotels, and malls. Attacks targeting polling stations cannot be ruled out

Context

As many as 70 people were reportedly killed in election-related violence during the presidential election on February 23. Incumbent President Buhari of the All Progressives Congress (APC) party won the February 23 presidential election, with 56 percent of the vote versus 41 percent for the opposition presidential candidate Atiku Abubakar, his main challenger from the People's Democratic Party (PDP). Abubakar announced he will challenge the results in court, claiming the vote was marred with fraud.

Advice

Individuals in Nigeria are advised to monitor developments to the situation, anticipate significant business and transportation disruptions and increased security measures, avoid all protests and demonstrations as a precaution, and adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities and their home governments.

The security environment in Nigeria remains complex. Although travel is permissible in some areas, other areas should be considered strictly off limits. Professional security advice and support should be sought prior to travel.

 

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