Monday, April 23, 2007

Yar'Adua will be the new president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. The PDP candidate apparently won 70% of the vote (24.6 million) leaving other competitors in the dust. Buhari came in second with 6.6 million votes while Atiku came in third with 2.6 million.

However, this victory is not free from allegations and concerns over the validity of the results. Nigeria's largest election monitoring group alleges that the results cannot be trusted and that the elections should be re-held. Other international watch groups have also called into question the results of both the state and presidential elections. The US announced that it was "deeply troubled" by the weekend polls which it referred to as "flawed".

Additionally, the elections were marred by violence with recent reports putting the deaths at 200. There was even an attempt to blow up INEC headquarters in Abuja with a fuel truck. Witnesses at the polls say that there was general confusion at the polling stations, as well, what with the failure to receive ballots within a reasonable time.

Anyway, another election down. Thank God. I just hope that this new president will actually have the people's interests in mind and will take Nigeria forward, not backward. Only time will tell.

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