Skip to content

With Buhari poised to win re-election, Nigerian bishops continue call for credibility

Free World Class Education
FREE Catholic Classes

By (CNA/EWTN)
2/27/2019 (1 month ago)
Catholic Online (https://www.catholic.org)

Nigeria is in the midst of counting votes cast in a contentious general election, and Catholic bishops are urging the nation's leaders to conduct a credible and transparent vote, while at the same time the bishops closely observe the election process.

Highlights

By (CNA/EWTN)
Catholic Online (https://www.catholic.org)
2/27/2019 (1 month ago)

Published in Middle East

Keywords: Buhari poised, re-election, Nigerian bishops


Abuja, Nigeria, (CNA) - A week before the elections were supposed to take place, the bishops called for all Nigerians to pray and fast for the success of the elections.

The Catholic Bishops Conference of Nigeria announced Feb. 25 that Caritas Nigeria, in collaboration with the Nigerian Justice Development and Peace Commissions, had set up a "Situation Room" to collect observations and reports about the elections from diocese across the country.

The general election, during which Nigerians voted for a presidential candidate as well as for the Senate and House of Representatives, was originally scheduled for Feb. 16 but was delayed at the last minute until Feb. 23. Catholic Action Nigeria said at the time that the delay placed a burden on citizens, especially those who underwent difficult travels to vote.

The Independent National Electoral Commission is still counting votes. Incumbent president Muhammadu Buhari has the lead as of Feb. 26, having won 13 of Nigeria's 36 states, according to the BBC. His opponent, Atiku Abubakar of the People's Democratic Party (PDP), has won 11 states and the capital, Abuja. Uche Secondus, chairman of Abubakar's party, has alleged that there have been irregularities in the election.

According to the Nigerian bishops' conference, the Church has "actively engaged 3,823 accredited Observers, and 9,000 Citizen Observers to enhance data collection and collation" during elections. Father Zacharia Nyantiso Samjumi, Secretary General of the Catholic Secretariat of Nigeria, signed the Feb. 25 report.

The bishops observed that voting at many polling places commenced very late. Some polling places experienced attacks from suspected Boko Haram militants; a 19-year-old man was killed at a polling place in the north-central region of the country. There were also some instances of people attempting to steal ballot boxes and technical problems with electronic card readers used to identify voters.

Some areas saw a low voter turnout a because security fears. In one area, armed men reportedly hijacked voting materials and abducted officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission and other officials. In at least two areas, armed men gunned a number of people down at the polls and "snatched ballot boxes." In Lagos state, the bishops report that cast votes were burnt and voters were "chased by suspected thugs."

The bishops also said their observers noted cases of buying and selling votes in at least ten states across the country.

"The Catholic Bishops Conference of Nigeria is grateful to all Nigerians for their resilience and admonishes [the Independent National Electoral Commission] to improve on the electoral systems and processes for the purposes of credible and transparent future elections in Nigeria," the report concludes.

The Nigerian bishops' conference had released a Jan. 19 statement ahead of the election after meeting at St. Agnes Catholic Church in Lagos, Nigeria, specifically warning against illegal voting practices such as buying or selling votes.

"Being an election year, 2019 appears delicate; we call on Nigerians to carry out their civic responsibilities with diligence and patriotism," the statement read, according to Pulse Nigeria.

"Nigerians should see the election as a duty to enthrone good leadership, and no amount of financial inducement should sway us."

Nigeria became a democracy in 1999 and is Africa's most populous nation, with the continent's largest economy, but has for years faced attacks and kidnappings by the radial Islamist group Boko Haram. Last year, the militants burned 22 buildings, including a part of the Catechetical Training Centre in Kaya.

Your Prayer Requests 'LIVE'

---


'Help Give every Student and Teacher FREE resources for a world-class Moral Catholic Education'


Copyright 2019 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for January 2019
Young People and the Example of Mary.
That young people, especially in Latin America, follow the example of Mary and respond to the call of the Lord to communicate the joy of the Gospel to the world.


Comments


More Middle East

Bishops pray for victims of earthquakes in Philippines Watch

Image of

Catholic leaders have offered prayers for the Philippines after two earthquakes struck the region this week. Manila, Philippines, (CNA) - A ... continue reading


Killed in the Rwandan genocide, this couple is being considered for sainthood Watch

Image of

The story of Cyprien and Daphrose Rugumba is a story of atheism and devout faith, of a strained marriage and a love that overcomes ... continue reading



Iraqi archbishop longs for better times for his Church and his people Watch

Image of

Archbishop Petros Mouche heads the Syriac-Catholic Archdiocese of Mosul, Iraq†s second-largest city, which was captured by ISIS in the ... continue reading


Five years after priest's murder in Syria, Jesuits hope to introduce his cause Watch

Image of

During a visit to Homs last week, the superior general of the Society of Jesus said that he would be happy to open a cause of beatification ... continue reading


Netanyahu West Bank pledge could rule out 'two-state solution' in Middle East Watch

Image of

 Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Saturday that he will declare sovereignty over existing settlements in the West Bank ... continue reading


Never Miss any Updates!

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers.

Deacon Keith Fournier Hi readers, it seems you use Catholic Online a lot; that's great! It's a little awkward to ask, but we need your help. If you have already donated, we sincerely thank you. We're not salespeople, but we depend on donations averaging $14.76 and fewer than 1% of readers give. If you donate just $5.00, the price of your coffee, Catholic Online School could keep thriving. Thank you. Help Now >

Information
Learn about Catholic world

Catholic Online
Inform - Inspire - Ignite

Catholic Online Saints
Your saints explained

Catholic Online Prayers
Prayers for every need

Catholic Online Bible
Complete bible online

Catholic Online News
Your news Catholic eye

Daily Reading
Today's bible reading

Lent / Easter
Death & resurrection of Jesus

Advent / Christmas
Birth of Jesus

Rest of Catholic Online
All Catholic world we offer

Services
Products and services we offer

Catholic Online Shopping
Catholic medals, gifts & books

Advertise on Catholic Online
Your ads on catholic.org

Catholic Online Email
Email with Catholic feel

Education
Learn the Catholic way

Catholic Online School
Free Catholic education for all

Student Classes
K-12 & Adult Education Classes

Support Free Education
Tax deductible support Free education

Socials
Connect with us online

Catholic Online on Facebook
Catholic social network

Catholic Online on Twitter
Catholic Tweets

Catholic Online on YouTube
Enjoy our videos

Catholic Online on Instagram
Shared Catholic moments

Catholic Online on Pinterest
Catholic ideas style inspiration

Catholic Online Logo

Copyright 2019 Catholic Online. All materials contained on this site, whether written, audible or visual are the exclusive property of Catholic Online and are protected under U.S. and International copyright laws, © Copyright 2019 Catholic Online. Any unauthorized use, without prior written consent of Catholic Online is strictly forbidden and prohibited.

Catholic Online is a Project of Your Catholic Voice Foundation, a Not-for-Profit Corporation. Your Catholic Voice Foundation has been granted a recognition of tax exemption under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Federal Tax Identification Number: 81-0596847. Your gift is tax-deductible as allowed by law.