News / Africa

Nigerian President Declares Candidacy

TEXT SIZE - +

President Jonathan intends to launch his campaign on Saturday.

But he announced the decision early on the social networking site Facebook in an apparent attempt to upstage Wednesday's campaign launch by former military ruler Ibrahim Babangida.

President Jonathan's post said that in presenting himself as a candidate, he makes no pretense that he is the most intelligent Nigerian or has a magic wand to solve all of the country's problems. What he does promise, he says, is to always do right by the Nigerian people, to tell the truth, and to listen.

The announcement ends months of speculation about President Jonathan's intensions after taking power in May following the death of President Umaru Musa Yar'Adua.

President Jonathan is from southern Nigeria. His candidacy violates an informal power-sharing agreement within the ruling party that says the next president should be from northern Nigeria.

Mr. Jonathan has not only the advantage of incumbency. He has also chosen a new cabinet, a new electoral commissioner, a new ruling-party chairman, and new heads of state security.

But he still faces several strong challengers for the ruling-party nomination, among them former general Babangida who led Nigeria from 1985 to 1993 atop a military dictatorship.

Announcing his candidacy in the capital, the former coup leader was all about democracy.

"The rationale for my involvement in politics is to lead a team of dedicated Nigerians who together can provide the courage, the focus, as well as the wisdom and sacrifice to engage necessary changes that will inspire and deliver economic prosperity in this country," said Ibrahim Babangida.

When it comes to leading Nigeria, Mr. Babangida says experience counts.

"Given my experience in the past and record of accomplishment in national life, my participation in 2011 presidential elections has become imperative," he said.

Since annulling the results of a 1993 election that is generally seen as Nigeria's fairest ever, Mr.Babangida says his time out of office makes him better prepared to return to power.

"After almost 18 years of deep and serious reflection on the path Nigeria has taken and the review of our past and present to which we have been exposed, I am today better prepared and more determined to fully engage the challenges and opportunities which lie ahead of our country," said Babangida.

Nigerians cast their ballots for president January 22.

You May Like

Multimedia Anti-Keystone XL Protests Continue

Demonstrators are worried about pipeline's effect on climate change, their traditional way of life, health and safety More

Thailand's Political Power Struggle Continues

Court gave Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra until May 2 to prepare her defense over abuse of power charges but uncertainty remains over election timing More

Malaysia Plane Search Tests Limits of Ocean Mapping Technology

Expert tells VOA existing equipment’s maximum operating depth is around 6 kilometers as operation continues on ocean bed for any trace of MH370 More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Messagei
X
Penelope Poulou
April 22, 2014 5:53 PM
Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Message

Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pro-Russian Separatists Plan 'Federalization Referendum' in Eastern Ukraine

Pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine say they plan to move forward next month with a referendum vote for greater autonomy, despite the Geneva agreement reached with Russia, the U.S. and Ukraine to end the political conflict. VOA's Brian Padden reports from the city of Donetsk in Eastern Ukraine.
Video

Video Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Church

On April 27, two popes - John the XXIII and John Paul II - will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky says the dual canonization is part of the current pope’s program to reconcile liberals and conservatives in the Roman Catholic Church.
Video

Video In Capturing Nature's Majesty, Film Makes Case for Its Survival

French filmmaker Luc Jacquet won worldwide acclaim for his 2005 Academy Award-winning documentary "March of the Penguins". Now Jacquet is back with a new film that takes movie-goers deep into the heart of a tropical rainforest - not only to celebrate its grandeur, but to make the case for its survival. VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Boston Marathon Bittersweet for Many Runners

Monday's running of the Boston Marathon was bittersweet for many of the 36,000 participants as they finished the run that was interrupted by a double bombing last year. Many gathered along the route paid respect to the four people killed as a result of two bombings near the finish line. VOA's Carolyn Presutti returned to Boston this year to follow two runners, forever changed because of the crimes.
Video

Video International Students Learn Film Production in World's Movie Capital

Hollywood - which is part of Los Angeles - is the movie capital of the world, and many aspiring filmmakers go there in hopes of breaking into the movie business. Mike O'Sullivan reports that regional universities are also a magnet for students who hope to become producers or directors.
Video

Video Pacific Rim Trade Deal Proves Elusive

With the U.S.-led war in Iraq ended and American military involvement in Afghanistan winding down, President Barack Obama has sought to pivot the country's foreign policy focus towards Asia. One aspect of that pivot is the negotiation of a free-trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations. But as Obama leaves this week on a trip to four Asian countries he has found it very difficult to complete the trade pact. VOA's Ken Bredemeier has more from Washington.
Video

Video Autistic Adults Face Housing, Job Challenges

Many parents of children with disabilities fear for the future of their adult child. It can be difficult to find services to help adults with disabilities - physical, mental or emotional - find work or live on their own. The mother of an autistic boy set up a foundation to advocate for the estimated 1.2 million American adults with autism, a developmental disorder that causes communication difficulties and often social difficulties. VOA's Faiza Elmasry reports.
AppleAndroid