- The US deputy representative to the United Nations, Jonathan Cohen, says widespread vote-buying could mar Nigeria's forthcoming general elections
- Cohen also said the US is concerned about reports of intimidation and partisanship by security forces, heightened insecurity and inability of IDPs or persons with disabilities to vote
- The UN envoy for West Africa, Mohamed Ibn Chambas, has also stated that tensions are high in Nigeria, ahead of the election
Widespread vote-buying could mar Nigeria's forthcoming general elections, the United States has warned.
The warning was given by the US deputy representative to the United Nations, Jonathan Cohen, during a UN Security Council meeting on West Africa, on Thursday, January 10, Punch reports.
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Legit.ng gathers that Cohen urged politicians, civil society groups and community leaders to ensure that the election was free and fair.
He said: “The United States sees a risk that widespread vote-buying could challenge the integrity of the election process.
“We are concerned about reports of intimidation and partisanship by security forces, heightened insecurity and inability of internally displaced persons or persons with disabilities to vote."
Also speaking, the UN envoy for West Africa, Mohamed Ibn Chambas, said that over the past months, Boko Haram attacks had increased.
Chambas explained that the terrorists had staged three attacks on Army bases in the last week of December 2018 alone.
According to Chambas, “tensions are high” in Nigeria ahead of the election. However, he said the signing of the peace accord by presidential candidates had brightened the prospects for peaceful elections.
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Meanwhile, Legit.ng previously reported that the US warned against violence during the February 2019 general elections in Nigeria, saying it will “remain intensely focused” on the elections.
US assistant secretary, Bureau of African Affairs, Tibor Nagy, Jr., stated this in his testimony to the US House of Representatives, Sub-Committee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights, and International Organisations.
Nagy shared many of the areas of concern that the legislators had voiced, assuring that the US was monitoring and messaging both publicly and privately, to mitigate a few key areas of risk that could jeopardise a free and fair process.
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