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US Ambassador to Nigeria Urges Patience with Election Challenges

People sit under a billboard with a congratulatory message of the President-Elect Bola Ahmed Tinubu of the All Progressives Congress in Lagos , Nigeria, March 5, 2023.

The U.S. Ambassador to Nigeria acknowledged in a statement Sunday that following the African nation’s recent election, “there are many angry and frustrated Nigerians as well as many who are celebrating victories.”

Mary Beth Leonard urged that “the legally established process for resolving challenges to the election be allowed to take its course.”

“As much as it can be unsatisfying to end an electoral process in a courtroom, in a constitutional democracy bound by the rule of law, “Leonard said, “that is where electoral conflicts may appropriately conclude."

Nigeria's Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) declared Bola Ahmed Tinubu the next president of Nigeria.

INEC Chairman Mahmood Yakubu said Tinubu, the ruling All Progressives Congress party candidate, received almost 8.8 million votes to win the most hotly contested race since Nigeria became a democracy.

Opposition leaders called the election a “sham” and have pledged to go to court to challenge the outcome.