Nigerian voters were disappointed last Saturday when voting in this month’s general elections was postponed.
Voting in the presidential election will now take place this Saturday. There are however fears many would not travel back to vote.
That has forced Nigerian authorities to reduce prices of fuel to encourage people to travel to vote.
The country’s information minister, Lai Mohammed said on Wednesday that Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) has cut the price of petrol at the pumps.
The reductions will however be enforced from Friday to Monday. The fuel cut is less than $1.
The minister told reporters that the National Union of Road Transport Workers, will also provide discount to commuters.
The discount will also affect airlines all hoping to provide relief for travellers “looking to travel to their respective voting points”.
Why elections delayed?
Millions of Nigerians were due to vote on Saturday when the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) decided to shift the entire process to February 23.
The postponement means governorship and state assembly elections will take now place on March 9, instead of original March 2 date.
Logistical challenges were however identified as the major reason for the delay according to the INEC.
Nigeria in 2015 also delayed it’s presidential election, shifting it from February 14 to March 28th.
Incumbent President Muhammadu Buhari is facing a tough challenge in Atiku Abubakar from the opposition.
Buhari who took office on May 29, 2015 defeated the then sitting President Goodluck Jonathan. He contested for president in 2003, 2007 and 2011 but only became successful and 2015.
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.
Buhari, 76, first took power in Nigeria in 1983 after a military coup. But his former ally, Atiku Abubakar the 72-year-old candidate is this time round leading the PDP into the election.
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.