Nigerians will on Saturday February 16 go to the polls. They will either be voting to retain incumbent President Muhammadu Buhari or show him the exit and replace him with his main challenger Atiku Abubakar.
The two candidates are the leading contenders for Saturday’s crucial presidential vote.
Buhari who took office on May 29, 2015 defeated the then sitting President Goodluck Jonathan.
That was the first time in Nigeria’s history that an opposition candidate won at the ballot box against an incumbent head of state.
He won the election by promising to crush two epidemics plaguing the nation—endemic corruption and a war with Islamic extremist.
Will Buhari be retained or booted out?
Running on the ticket of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Buhari has the herculean task of beating Atiku of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) or risk being the second incumbent to be booted out of power.
Buhari, 76, first took power in Nigeria in 1983 after a military coup. He launched a war on corruption by jailing political actors without trial and committing widespread human rights abuses.
Buhari contested for president in 2003, 2007 and 2011 but only became successful and 2015.
Atiku Abubakar the 72-year-old candidate is this time round leading the PDP into Saturday’s election.
The PDP inherited power from the military in 1999 and governed for the next 16 years.
For the first eight of those years, Atiku was vice president to Nigeria’s new democratic leader and former military head of state, Olusegun Obasanjo.
Atiku, like Buhari, is also a northern Muslim, born in Adamawa state.
— Atiku Abubakar (@atiku) February 14, 2019
He sought the APC presidential ticket for the 2015 elections but lost to Buhari and threw his support behind him, funding his campaign and even lending him a private jet.
Atiku switched sides again in 2017, and last year emerged as the PDP’s candidate.
He has promised to “make Nigeria work again”, lifting it out of the economic doldrums with business.
Atiku said he would run a people-friendly government if elected in President in the February 16 elections.