Retired President Uhuru Kenyatta is leading a team of election observers in Nigeria as Africa’s most populated country goes to polls.
The retired President has also managed to meet a host of local election stakeholders to deliberate on all mechanisms to deliver a free and verifiable election outcome.
Among the local leaders that Uhuru met is Nigeria’s Chief Justice and President of the Supreme Court of Nigeria, Olukayode Ariwoola, to be briefed on the judiciary’s preparedness – should there be election results contestations. Other high profile leaders that the former President is leading (as election observers) are former Presidents Thabo Mbeki (South Africa), Bai Koroma (Sierra Leone), and Joyce Banda (Malawi) among other mission leaders.
Mbeki is leading the Commonwealth Mission, Koroma the ECOWAS Mission and Banda the joint National Democratic Institute/International Republican Institute Mission. Uhuru, who is heading the African Union Election Observers Mission (AUEOM), flew to the country on Tuesday.
On Thursday, the former President also held discussions with the 90-member delegation of the AUEOM drawn from across 55 African Union member states. The head of election observers urged his team to stay true to the mission’s mandate of observing the electoral process and ensuring it is conducted in a free, credible and transparent manner.
There are a total of 18 political parties that are in presidential. Among them is the current ruling party, All Progressive Congress party, which has fronted Mr Bola Ahmed Tinubu as its candidate. This is the seventh presidential election to have been held in Nigeria since their independence.