Nigeria's ruling party takes state in vote

2014-06-22 18:36
Goodluck Jonathan (File: AP)

Goodluck Jonathan (File: AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Onitsha - Nigeria's ruling party toppled the main opposition candidate in a state governorship vote this weekend, officials said, giving President Goodluck Jonathan a boost ahead of national polls next year.

Ayodele Fayose of The People's Democratic Party's (PDP) took almost 60% of the vote in southwestern Ekiti state, unseating the opposition incumbent Kayode Fayemi, the electoral commission announced on Sunday.

Governors are among the most powerful figures in Africa's largest economy and oil producer. Some control budgets bigger than those of many African countries and play a significant role in selecting presidential candidates.

The victory in Ekiti - where organisers said voting was fair and peaceful - was a rare piece of good news for a ruling party that is likely to see its sternest test yet in the 2015 national election.

Jonathan has been beleaguered by defections of senior figures and criticism for his government's failure to quell Islamist group Boko Haram, which abducted more than 200 schoolgirls from a remote northeastern village in April.

The main opposition All Progressives Congress (APC) was created out of four regional parties last year - presenting a nationwide challenge to the ruling party.

Fayemi took office in late 2010 after a court annulled the result of 2007 polls that were marred by intimidation, vote-rigging and ballot-stuffing.

Security was heavy during this year's polls, and the electoral commission declared the election "free, fair, credible and transparent".

The United States would be watching the vote with "great interest", Washington's ambassador to Nigeria, James Entwistle, said ahead of the polls, adding a free and peaceful election would help demonstrate the credibility of the electoral system.

More than 800 people were killed and 65 000 displaced in three days of violence following the 2011 presidential election, Human Rights Watch has said.

Rioting erupted mainly in the mostly Muslim north after Jonathan, a Christian from the south, won the vote.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
Read more on:    goodluck jonathan  |  nigeria  |  west africa publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
1 comment
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Rugby World Cup 2015

All the action from the 2015 RWC, including live coverage of all 48 matches, breaking news, fixtures, results, logs - and much more!


Rugby World Cup 2015

UK expert: Boks ‘have KO game’
Ireland hold on to down Italy
As it happened: Ireland 16-9 Italy
All Blacks sympathise with England
Traffic Alerts

It is time to focus on your daily rhythm. Are you putting too much attention on future projects and neglecting the day to more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.