The Nigerian Presidential Elections were to have been held on the 14th February 2015, however the Independent National Electoral Commission has now postponed the elections to the end of March 2015 because of the ongoing atrocities and militant insurgency in the north east of the country.
The insurgency has become a matter of international concern and is threatening the country’s stability, democracy and status as one of Africa’s largest economic and populous nations.
South Australia is home to about 400 Nigerians who, in one way or other, do feel the effects of the continuing problems plaguing their motherland, which for many, remains home to their immediate or extended family members.
SALT Magazine spoke to Dr Sumbo Ndi, the President of the Nigerian Association in South Australia (NASA) for her view on the situation.
“We are praying for the best outcome,” she said, “Recent falls in oil prices, a falling domestic currency, the armed insurgency and the current political landscape is a cause of worry for most Nigerians at home and in diaspora. These factors have a huge impact on households, businesses and investors.
We sought the views of other members of the Nigerian community, but none were comfortable about stating their opinions publicly about the politics of the country. Similarly our email request for a response from the Nigerian High Commissioner in Canberra remains unanswered.
In our view this reluctance to comment, even anonymously, presents a pessimistic outlook for the democratic principles of a country which has enormous potential for international investment and infrastructure.
However, Nigeria has enjoyed uninterrupted civilian rule since 1999, and whoever wins the March election, will be facing huge challenges to address and rectify the key issues which now threaten Nigeria’s democracy and economic independence.