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Nigeria’s Buhari confident of win in 2019. Are his boasts empty?

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Nigerians are weighing in on President Muhammadu Buhari’s chances in the presidential poll slated for 2019. On Friday, the man himself expressed confidence that the All Progressives Congress (APC) will win the 2019 general elections.

Buhari boasted that his party’s victory was imminent, stating that only the blind would fail to notice that victory lay ahead.

His Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, quoted the President as speaking in that regard while receiving, in his hometown of Daura, Katsina State, the representatives of the 34 chairmen of the Association of Local Governments of Nigeria.

Buhari said the string of victories recorded by the APC in bye-elections in Bauchi, Katsina and Kogi States was sufficient proof that 2019 elections would be won by the party.

“Coming against the backdrop of the victory in Ekiti governorship election, the string of victory by our party, the APC, is a clear indication of the way things will go in 2019.

‘‘For those who are discerning; those who have ears and eyes they will see, hear and understand.

“Those who don’t understand are entitled to their mistaken assumptions.”

The President said the victories in the recent polls were “signs of things to come,” he said.

Buhari’s boasts have, however, attracted very strong reactions from critics and the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

A former lawmaker and a well known critic of President Buhari, Junaid Mohammed, doubts his claim to being an autocrat.

He said, “The boast as far as I am concerned, the man Buhari is not a democrat and he is incapable of learning to become one.

“I sincerely hope that the 2019 elections come and happen the way normal elections should hold because if what we saw happen in Ondo, Ekiti and the last three Senatorial bye elections in Katsina, Kogi, and Bauchi is what they refer to as an election, then I doubt if we are going to have an election worth its name.

“If we call it an election because people have gone to vote and there was no too much violence, but a humongous amount of money was doled out to voters in exchange for their ballots; will the election be worth anything? I doubt.”

On its part, the PDP advised Buhari and the ruling All Progressives Congress not to be deluded into believing that it had the 2019 elections all wrapped up.

Read Also: When Nigerian lawmakers shun work. All the high-wire politics and why it matters

Secondus said: “President Buhari is being deceived by those who are not familiar with politics of their states that they would deliver results to him.

“The President and the APC would be shocked with the level of their rejection by the electorate come 2019. Winning of elections is not about boasting. What will the President tell Nigerians that he has done for them? What will he tell workers he has done for them? What will he tell Nigerians he has done about the economy, job creation and others?

“Will Nigerians vote for someone who will not stay in the country to administer the country, but would choose to be junketing all over the world?

“We know he relies on security agencies and INEC to rig for him, but we want to assure him that the people are determined to put an end to the misery he and his government have brought to the nation.”

Analysts predict a very close race in 2019. Buhari’s cult-like following in northern Nigeria is still talked about as one that could work in his favour. In the northwest, north-central and northeast, the emergence of former governors Aminu Tambuwal, Rabiu Kwankwaso, former Vice President Atiku Abubakar and incumbent Senate President Bukola Saraki as aspirants has done little to sway the views of some close watchers of the polity.

This body of analysts maintain that Buhari’s confidence is buoyed by the tremendous support coming from the Southwest which for a while has been under the firm control of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu who continues to voice strong backing for the incumbent President.

There are indications, however, that the general elections would not be a walkover for APC. The forces massed against Buhari are not just those organized by PDP. The emergence of Coalition of United Political Parties (CUPP) said to be pro PDP remains a major headache though APC maintains that it also has an amalgam of other parties willing to back her in the coming polls.

APC’s biggest huddle yet would certainly be the open conspiracy by former military rulers Ibrahim Babangida, Olusegun Obasanjo and Theophilus Danjuma to truncate Buhari’s rule. Collectively, they have branded him incompetent, nepotistic and incapable of addressing the security challenges facing the country, particularly the largely perceived ethnic cleansing in the north-central States of Benue and Plateau.

They have not hidden their intentions to work with others to overthrow APC in 2019.

Politics

Somaliland electoral body, SLNEC, postpones presidential election. Here’s why

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Somaliland has postponed its presidential elections to next year from its initial scheduled date in November.

The region’s electoral body, Somaliland National Electoral Commission (SLNEC) made the revelation on Saturday.

The poll will now be held in nine months from October – or next July – because the currently scheduled date of Nov. 13 “is not viable due to time, technical and financial constraints,” SLNEC tweeted on Saturday.

 

There were deadly protests in the region in August with demonstrators demanding elections be held in November when President Abdi’s term will end.

The protest came out amid suspicions President Muse Bihi Abdi wanted to delay the poll and extend his term.

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Chad pushes for Africa’s permanent seat at UN’s Security Council

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Chad, a country in Central Africa is pushing for a representation of the continent in the United Nations Security Council as a permanent member.

Chad’s Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Awatif El Tidjani Ahmed Koiboro, on Friday said Africa’s inclusion into the Security Council would “correct a historic injustice” and help countries in the G5 Sahel.

“On the reform of the Security Council, the body responsible for peace and international security, Chad once again urges member states to move from rhetoric to action in order to achieve the said reform and correct the historic injustice towards the African continent, which excludes it from full and equal participation in this body.” She said.

“Regarding the internal situation of the G5 Sahel, which recorded the departure of the sister Republic of Mali, we regret this withdrawal,” said Mss Koiboro.

“Because Mali is a founding member of this organization. It has its place by our side.

“We will not be able to defeat terrorism, stabilize and develop the Sahel, without a common fight and pooling of resources.

“We hope that our Malian brothers will reconsider their decision and rejoin our common organization. The door of the G5 Sahel is always wide open to welcome them.

The push for a permanent seat at the UNSC has lasted for some time, countries like South Africa and specifically Nigeria have already demanded two permanent seats be allocated on the UN Security Council to Africa. How soon will the seat come?

The Security Council has primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security. It has 15 Members, and each Member has one vote. Under the Charter of the United Nations, all Member States are obligated to comply with Council decisions.

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