OFF-CYCLE ELECTIONS IN BAYELSA, IMO AND KOGI: AN EARLY REFERENDUM
The Bayelsa, Imo, and Kogi off-cycle elections are scheduled to take place on November 11, 2023. Off-cycle elections are held outside the general elections schedule due to circumstances such as death, resignation, impeachment, annulment of elections by courts, and many more. The forthcoming off-cycle elections in Bayelsa, Imo, and Kogi, which are scheduled to take place in the aftermath of the 2023 Nigerian general elections, hold a pivotal place in the country’s democratic process. These elections provide a unique opportunity for a swift evaluation of the new government’s performance so far and offer a referendum on how citizens in these states respond to the leadership of the recently elected administration. The outcomes of these contests will significantly impact the political fortunes of the parties involved and lay the foundation for the upcoming general elections in 2027. The 2023 Nigerian general elections marked an important milestone in the country’s democratic journey, characterized by technological advancements, increased civil society participation, and identity-based divisions among candidates and parties. These factors influenced the election results and set the stage for the off-cycle governorship elections in Bayelsa, Imo, and Kogi.
Voicing Discontent: Media, Elections and Constitutional term-limits
This edition of West Africa Insights looks ahead to forthcoming elections in Burkina Faso, Cote D'Ivoire and Guinea and explores the ways in which new and old media are continuing to shape discourses about elections and democracy in Ghana and Nigeria.
West-Africa in 2023- Votes and volatility
Across the region, hard-won progress in press freedom and civil liberties are in decline with journalists arbitrarily detained and disinformation is on the rise. Addressing these challenges in the context of economic stagnation will be a significant challenge.
Online operations- Nigeria’s 2023 social media election campaigns
Civic awareness of the continuous voter’s registration process and the importance of participating has largely been driven by a sustained online campaign in the run-up to 2023, while the platforms can be used to fact check and hold elected and aspiring officials to account. Finding a balance that accentuates these positives and diminishes the negative aspects must be a priority as the elections approach.
Changing of the Guard:
A View at the Trends and Terrain Determining the 2023 Nigerian General Elections
The 2023 elections will likely be the first to feel the significant impact of a third major increase in the country’s registered voter population. Whereas in previous elections increase in the registered voter population did not typically translate into a higher voter turnout, as was the case in 2019. In fact, the percentage of voter turn-out dropped with every successive election since the 2003 electoral cycle. Despite this trend, there is cause for optimism that it will be reversed in the 2023 elections. This is because significant campaigns have been launched to encourage younger voters to register and get their permanent voter card (PVC) in order to become more active stakeholders in the electoral process. Another reason is increased faith in the electoral process following the introduction of the Bimodal Voter Accreditation Software (BVAS) and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Results Viewing Portal (IReV). The development led to an increase in the number of youths registered to vote – the electoral body estimates 40% of newly registered voters are students3 – making it the strata with the highest number of potential voters. In looking at the 2023 elections, it is important to look at critical trends we can identify from past elections and assess their salience, alongside
Buharimeter 2019 Survey Report
The 2019 Buharimeter National Survey elicits the views of Nigerians on three key areas. These are: reflections on the recently concluded General Elections; policy priorities of Government; and strategies to address lingering challenges facing the country, over the next four years.