Nigeria has added more than 10 million new voters to its election register, most of them youths, ahead of a presidential vote next February, the electoral agency has said.
Voters in Nigeria will pick a new president to succeed Muhammadu Buhari, who cannot run after serving the two terms allowed by the constitution. Governors, as well as members of the Senate and House of Representatives, will also be elected.
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) said a year-long exercise that ended on Sunday had registered 10.49 million new voters, with 84 percent of these aged 34 and below.
In the last election in 2019, there were 84 million registered voters, INEC figures showed.
Participation in Nigerian elections is typically low, but political analysts say the country’s economic woes, seen in double-digit inflation, as well as rising insecurity may push more people to vote, especially young people.
The main presidential contest is between ruling party candidate Bola Tinubu, a former Lagos state governor and main opposition candidate Atiku Abubakar, who was vice president between 1999-2007.
But Peter Obi, a former governor of the southeastern state of Anambra and Abubakar’s running mate in the 2019 elections, has excited a large number of youths after joining a smaller opposition party, and could be a presidential wildcard in 2023.