Commonwealth Secretary-General Emeka Anyaoku, in a statement quoted by AFP today, said Saturday’s elections marked “another important step” in the country’s transition to democracy. Anyaoku expressed satisfaction with the elections, saying they were “on the whole orderly and successfully organised”. A 17-member team from the Commonwealth secretariat was sent to Nigeria last week to monitor the electoral process.
News agencies said voting at some 100,000 polling stations in the country was generally well-organised although some tension and disturbances were reported in the troubled Niger Delta region. Four men were arrested at a polling station in Port Harcourt, AFP said. One death related to polling day violence was reported in the country, compared to at least 10 reported during the 5 December local government elections, Reuters said. AFP said the turnout, which had been forecast at 30 million people, was reported to be “impressive” in most areas of the country. Voters at some polling centres were allowed to stay after they had cast their ballots to watch votes being counted as part of an anti-fraud measure, BBC said.
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