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Nigerian VP Announces Candidacy for President


Nigeria's vice president has formally declared his plans to run for president in the April elections.

Atiku Abubakar Saturday told a rally of thousands of supporters in Abuja that he plans to be the candidate who will bring positive changes to Nigeria. He did not say which party he will represent in the election.

His announcement highlights the rift between Abubakar and President Olusegun Obasanjo, who strongly opposes Abubakar's presidential aspirations. Relations between the two have steadily declined since the vice president came out against an effort to amend the constitution so that Mr. Obasanjo could run for a third term.

In August, the ruling People's Democratic Party suspended Abubakar's party membership for three months, effectively preventing him from taking part in election primaries. Party officials say he was suspended because of allegations of corruption.

The April elections would mark the nation's first transfer of power from one elected president to another.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.

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