Ex-Nigeria President, Jonathan arrives South Africa for election observer duty

The former Nigerian president said he was fully geared to undertake the observation duties.
Goodluck Jonathan

Former president of Nigeria, Goodluck Jonathan on Wednesday arrived Johannesburg to monitor South Africa’s national and provincial elections holding on May 8.

An enthusiastic Jonathan said he was visiting as head of the election observation mission of the Electoral Institute for Sustainable Democracy in Africa (EISA).

“I arrived Johannesburg early this morning to lead the Election Observation Mission of the Electoral Institute for Sustainable Democracy in Africa (EISA) to South Africa’s national and provincial elections.” wrote Jonathan on his social media handles.

EISA is a South African not-for-profit organisation with offices across the continent that promotes democratic governance, human rights and citizen participation with election observation as one of its core mandates. It has been in existence since 1996.

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The organisation is chaired by Sierra Leone’s first female Chief Electoral Commissioner and ex-cabinet member, Dr Christiana Thorpe.

The dominant political parties in the May 8 polls are the African National Congress (ANC), Democratic Alternative (DA), Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) and Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP).

Incumbent President, Cyril Ramaphosa leads the ANC to the polls while Mmusi Maimane leads DA as major opposition. Others are Julius Malema of EFF and Mangosuthu Buthelezi of the IFP.

In the last elections in 2014, the ANC scored 62.15% of votes, the DA 22.23%, EFF 6.35% and IFP 2.40%.

President Jacob Zuma was then re-elected by the ANC-dominated parliament for another last term of five years. Zuma resigned from office in February 2018 following corruption allegations and subsequent charges, paving way for Ramaphosa to be appointed until the next elections.

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The former Nigerian president said he was fully geared to undertake the observation duties as South Africans head to the polls to elect new parliamentarians.

“Democracy has indeed turned the corner in Africa with many nations holding periodic and peaceful elections which put in the hands of the people the power to choose their leaders.” Jonathan said of democracy in Africa.

Jonathan was Nigeria’s President between 2010 and 2015 when he lost his re-election bid to incumbent President Muhammadu Buhari.

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