The United States has congratulated Nigeria on the election of Bola Tinubu, the ruling party presidential candidate, while urging calm amid accusations of voter fraud and technical glitches.
State Department spokesman Ned Price said that the competitive election represents a new period for Nigerian politics and democracy, acknowledging the discontent among some Nigerians over the validity of the results. One opposition figure has promised to dispute the outcome.
Tinubu won 8.8 million votes, while main opposition candidates Atiku Abubakar and Peter Obi snagged 6.9 million and 6.1 million, respectively, according to the Independent National Electoral Commission. Malfunctions, long delays, and slow results from new biometric voter identification technology have fueled accusations of fraud.
Price urged political leaders to register their concerns through established legal mechanisms and called on all parties to refrain from violence or inflammatory rhetoric.
“Nigerians are clearly within their rights to have such concerns and should have high expectations for their electoral process.
“We call on all parties to refrain from violence or inflammatory rhetoric at this critical time,” Price said.