News / Africa

    Nigerian Presidential Candidates Campaign on Improving Security

    A supporter holds a poster campaigning for former anti-graft chief Nuhu Ribadu during the presidential primaries of ACN in Lagos, 14 Jan 2011
    A supporter holds a poster campaigning for former anti-graft chief Nuhu Ribadu during the presidential primaries of ACN in Lagos, 14 Jan 2011

    A series of unsolved bombings in Nigeria's capital and continuing violence in the north make security the biggest campaign issue in the country's presidential election.

    When voters are concerned about security, it is an opportunity for challengers to criticize the current government for not doing enough to keep people safe.

    But after only eight months in office, President Goodluck Jonathan is campaigning as much as an outsider as he is an incumbent.

    "Everybody, all over the world, is looking up to Nigeria to make significant changes, to change the country, to transform the country. And that can only be done by good leadership," Jonathan said.

    The ruling-party candidate says his government has introduced a series of new anti-terrorism measures, including better control of explosive materials, inspections of police-licensed armories and the installation of closed-circuit televisions to better monitor public places.

    Jonathan supporters admit he mishandled the political aftermath of an Independence Day bombing in the capital in October by too quickly absolving militants from the oil-rich Niger Delta who appeared to claim responsibility.  Mr. Jonathan is from the southern Niger Delta.  Northern political opponents quickly called for his resignation.

    The president is responding to criticism of a Niger Delta amnesty plan that he helped negotiate by saying that the increase in oil production is evidence of greater security.

    "Even the challenges in the Niger Delta, if we had not addressed them, our oil price and production would not have reached its maximum," he noted. "The production dropped to less than one-third, but now we can produce more than the OPEC quota. What caused it? And. you are saying there is no security in the Niger Delta."

    Mr. Jonathan's main challenger is former military ruler Muhammadu Buhari, who says his experience in command makes him a better choice to tackle insecurity. Mr. Buhari says a lack of discipline in the ruling-party has made Nigerians usafe and is discouraging outside investment.

    "The most important this is security, physical security," Buhari said. "All persons living in Nigeria must feel secure to work 24 hours a day. There is nobody who will invest his money in Nigeria when your management will be abducted and maybe you will be asked to give more than you have invested in the country to get your managers out or they get assassinated."

    Former anti-corruption chief Nuhu Ribadu is also running for president. He says insecurity in both the Niger Delta and parts of the north is a product of economic frustration. Development in the oil-rich Niger Delta has never matched the wealth it generates for Nigeria. Ethnic violence in Plateau State is driven largely by land clashes between southern agriculturalists and northern pastoralists.

    Ribadu says no matter how many more soldiers are deployed, there will be no end to this insecurity without resolving its economic causes.

    "We all yearn for a country where our youth are empowered, where jobs and social services are made available. We can build a corruption-free society where lives and properties are protected and where peace and security is ensured," Ribadu said.

    Security officials say part of the new anti-terrorism measures are stepped-up patrols at political rallies to prevent violence from disrupting the campaign for April's vote.

    You May Like

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    City could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters

    Turkey Aims New Crackdown at Journalists, Academics, Airline Workers

    Ankara continues targeting people allegedly linked to exiled cleric, who it says led the failed military coup

    Pakistan Ready to Inaugurate Rebuilt Afghan Border Crossing

    Construction of Torkham Gate triggered deadly clashes between Pakistani and Afghan military forces

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

    By the Numbers

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunitiesi
    X
    VOA News
    July 25, 2016 5:09 PM
    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video Recycling Lifeline for Lebanon’s Last Glassblowers

    In a small Lebanese coastal town, one family is preserving a craft that stretches back millennia. The art of glass blowing was developed by Phoenicians in the region, and the Khalifehs say they are the only ones keeping the skill alive in Lebanon. But despite teaming up with an eco-entrepreneur and receiving an unexpected boost from the country’s recent trash crisis the future remains uncertain. John Owens reports from Sarafand.
    Video

    Video Migrants Continue to Risk Lives Crossing US Border from Mexico

    In his speech Thursday before the Republican National Convention, the party’s presidential candidate, Donald Trump, reiterated his proposal to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border if elected. Polls show a large percentage of Americans support better control of the nation's southwestern border, but as VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from the border town of Nogales in the Mexican state of Sonora, the situation faced by people trying to cross the border is already daunting.
    Video

    Video In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movement

    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video Calm the Waters: US Doubles Down Diplomatic Efforts in ASEAN Meetings

    The United States is redoubling diplomatic efforts and looking to upcoming regional meetings to calm the waters after an international tribunal invalidated the legal basis of Beijing's extensive claims in the South China Sea. VOA State Department correspondent Nike Ching has the story.
    Video

    Video Four Brother Goats Arrive in Brooklyn on a Mission

    While it's unusual to see farm animals in cities, it's become familiar for residents of Brooklyn, New York, to see a little herd of goats. Unlike gas-powered mowing equipment, goats remove invasive weeds quietly and without adding more pollution to the air. As Faiza Elmasry tells us, this is a pilot program and if it proves to be successful, the goat gardener program will be extended to other areas of New York. Faith Lapidus narrates.
    Video

    Video Scientists in Poland Race to Save Honeybees

    Honeybees are in danger worldwide. Causes of what's known as colony collapse disorder range from pesticides and loss of habitat to infections. But scientists in Poland say they are on track to finding a cure for one of the diseases. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Wall Already Runs Along Parts of US-Mexico Border

    The Republican Party’s presidential nominee, Donald Trump, gained the support of many voters by saying he would build a wall to keep undocumented immigrants and drugs from coming across the border from Mexico. Critics have called his idea impractical and offensive to Mexico, while supporters say such a bold approach is needed to control the border. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from the border town of Nogales, Arizona.
    Video

    Video New HIV Tests Emphasize Rapid Results

    As the global fight against AIDS intensifies, activists have placed increasing importance on getting people to know their HIV status. Some companies are developing new HIV testing methods designed to be quick, easy and accurate. Thuso Khumalo looks at the latest methods, presented at the International AIDS conference in Durban, South Africa.
    Video

    Video African Youth with HIV Urge More Support

    HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, is the top killer of teens in sub-Saharan Africa. But many youths say their experience with the virus is unique and needs to be addressed differently than the adult epidemic. VOA South African Correspondent Anita Powell reports.
    Video

    Video Pop-Up Art Comes to Your Living Room, Backyard and Elsewhere

    Around the world, independent artists and musicians wrestle with a common problem: where to exhibit or perform? Traditional spaces such as museums and galleries are reserved for bigger names, and renting a space is not feasible for many. Enter ArtsUp, which connects artists with venue owners. Whether it’s a living room, restaurant, office or even a boat, pop-up events are bringing music and art to unexpected places. Tina Trinh has more.
    Video

    Video Scotland’s Booming Whisky Industry Fears Brexit Hangover

    After Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, Scotland’s government wants to break away from the United Kingdom – fearing the nation’s exports are at risk. Among the biggest of these is whisky. Henry Ridgwell reports on a time of turmoil for those involved in the ancient art of distilling Scotland’s most famous product.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora