AP Explains: Why Nigeria’s election faces multiple threats

AP Explains Why Nigeria, election, faces, multiple, threatsAP Explains: Why Nigeria’s election faces multiple threats.
JOHANNESBURG (AP) – Nigeria has slid into a constitutional crisis three weeks before the presidential election after President Muhammadu Buhari suspended the country’s chief justice, a key player in what likely will be a disputed vote affecting the lives of some 190 million people.The president’s rival calls the suspension “an act of dictatorship” meant to influence the election.Africa’s most populous country already faces multiple challenges as it tries for a second consecutive democratic transfer of power on Feb.16 after decades marked by coups.Here’s a look at what’s at stake.Nigeria is Africa’s largest oil producer but its economy is sluggish and corruption is widespread.A rich elite dazzles in seaside Lagos, the continent’s largest city, but most of the country struggles to get by.In a too common scene, at least a dozen people died earlier this month when an overturned oil tanker exploded in the south while scores of people were scooping up the leaking fuel to use at home.Many Nigerians were dismayed last year by reports based on data by the World Poverty Clock saying their country had surpassed India with the largest number of people living in extreme poverty.A changing climate in the arid north is already pushing some people toward the heavily populated south in search of the means to survive.FILE – In this Wednesday, July 8, 2015 file photo, Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari, left, stands next to Oby Ezekwesili, a coordinator of the ‘Bring Back Our Girls’ campaign, at the presidential residence in Abuja, Nigeria.The woman who led the global campaign to free Nigerian schoolgirls kidnapped by Boko Haram extremists is dropping out of the race for Nigeria’s presidency, it was announced Thursday, Jan.24, 2019.Oby Ezekwesili is the most prominent woman to seek the presidency in Nigeria, where politics, as in many African nations, have long been dominated by men.(AP Photo/Olamikan Gbemiga, file) The Boko Haram extremist group and an offshoot affiliated with the Islamic State group are making a deadly resurgence in the northeast despite declarations by Buhari’s government that Boko Haram had been crushed.The government has noted the extremists’ worrying new use of drones.A separate conflict in central Nigeria has become even deadlier, with fighting between farmers and herdsmen over scare resources killing some 1,300 people in the first half of 2018 – six times more than those killed by extremists, according to the International Crisis Group.The conflict between the largely Muslim herders and largely Christian farmers is a sensitive issue for Buhari, a Muslim and ethnic Fulani from the north who is accused by some of not doing enough to end the fighting.Meanwhile, oil militants in the south and bandits in the northwest continue to pose a deadly threat.In a year of several major elections in Africa, people across the continent are watching to see how Nigeria’s will unfold.It did not help confidence when neither Buhari nor his main challenger, fo
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