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Drama in the delay

Muhammadu Buhari in Katsina 15 February 2019 Pic: Guo Jun/Xinhua News Agency/PA Images
Muhammadu Buhari in Katsina 15 February 2019 Pic: Guo Jun/Xinhua News Agency/PA Images

Accusations of malfeasance and conspiracy follow the last-minute postponement of the national elections

In an election campaign that has failed to capture the nation's imagination, the announcement that voting would be delayed by a week, less than six hours before it was due to start, marked one of its more exciting points. Even now, there are many election experts, some with the foreign observer missions, who doubt that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) is prepared for the new date of 23 February. INEC blamed problems with logistics and bad weather for the delay. Dropping biometric card readers and associated electronics and ballot papers for 84 million registered voters in 179,000 polling units is a formidable operation, but it's unclear why INEC waited so long to make its announcement.

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