It is decision time for millions of Nigerians voting in Africa’s biggest presidential election. With more than 73 million people registered to vote, queues formed early across the country.
As the continent’s most populous nation, with some 150 million inhabitants, hopes are high that this could be Nigeria’s most free and fair election since the end of military rule.
After staving off a challenge from within his own People’s Democratic party over his candidacy, the incumbent leader, Goodluck Jonathan is clear favourite. He is enormously popular in his native south and to win outright he needs at least a quarter of the votes cast in at least two-thirds of states and the capital, Abuja.
But many in the country’s mainly Muslim north back former military ruler, Muhammadu Buhari in the belief one of their own should have another turn after northerner Umaru Yar’Adua died in office last year.
A strict Muslim known for his “War Against Indiscipline”, Buhari is expected to win strong support despite his Congress for Progressive Change being a young party.