Saturday, November 4, 2023

Bola Tinubu: Nigeria’s President-Elect – What’s Next?


On Wednesday, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) declared All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate Bola Tinubu the winner of the Nigerian presidential election. Tinubu won 37 percent of the vote and was declared the winner by the INEC chairman Mahmood Yakubu. Tinubu accepted the mandate and promised to work to make Nigeria great.

The announcement of Tinubu’s victory has been met with mixed reactions across the country. In Abuja, a small group of protesters held placards and sang Nigerian songs in Millennium Park. The European Union observer mission flagged major logistical problems, disenfranchised voters, and a lack of transparency by the INEC. Opposition leaders from the Labour Party, People’s Democratic Party (PDP), and African Democratic Congress held press conferences at a nearby hotel to express their dissatisfaction with the results.

The INEC had implemented biometric voter identification technology and a portal for uploading election results to improve transparency. However, the opposition argued that the system’s failure to upload tallies allowed for ballot manipulation and discrepancies in the results from manual counts at polling stations.

Tinubu’s inauguration as president is scheduled for May 29th. In February, outgoing President Muhammadu Buhari formed a committee to ensure a smooth transition. The opposition is preparing to file legal challenges before then. If sworn in, Tinubu will have to address Nigeria’s fractured economy, which has suffered two recessions in five years due to policy missteps and the COVID-19 pandemic. He will also have to tackle rampant insecurity across almost all six of its geopolitical zones, including Boko Haram’s 13-year armed campaign in the northeast and various armed groups operating elsewhere in the country.

Tinubu’s win has been met with both celebration and criticism, but ultimately it is up to him to deliver on his promise to make Nigeria great. The work ahead is daunting, but with a mandate from the people, Tinubu has the opportunity to bring about real change in Nigeria.

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