The party(APC) is, however, a fragile one that seems united only in its quest to wrest the presidency from Jonathan or to have power “returned” to the north. Though the election is expected to be very competitive, the odds still favor President Jonathan
January 18, 2015 – The Brookings, a US research group has tipped President Goodluck Jonathan to win the 2015 general elections.
In the latest report titled “The 2015 Presidential Elections in Nigeria: The Issues and Challenges” published by the group, authored by Jideofor Adibe, a Senior Lecturer in Nasarawa State University, edited by African Renaissance, Co-edited by Journal for African Foreign Affairs said APC strategists are banking on a combination of votes from the populous northwest (18 million votes), northeast (11 million votes) and southwest (13.5 million votes) for victory.
“Based on this calculation, the APC, after choosing Buhari from the northwest as its presidential candidate, also chose Professor Yemi Osinbajo,a Christian from the southwest, as its vice presidential candidate”, it said adding that what remains to be seen is whether the former governor of Lagos State, Senator Bola Tinubu considered to be the party’s strongest mobilizer in the southwest—will be very enthusiastic in delivering the battleground southwest to the APC since his ambition for VP was turned down to avoid a Muslim, Muslim ticket.
“The greatest strength of the ruling PDP is its “power of incumbency,” and all the institutional support that goes with it. Not only does it have federal resources to use as patronage, it also controls key institutions like the police, the army and the anti-corruption agencies like the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, which could be used to harass political enemies.
“Furthermore, of the 36 states in the country, the PDP has 21 governors while APC has 14”, the reporter noted.
It noted that after suffering a wave of defections to the APC last year, including five of its governors, the PDP seems to have rebounded strongly.
“In the battleground southwest, for instance, the party won recent governorship elections in Ekiti state and got the governor of Ondo State to defect from the Labor party to the PDP.
“The party is especially strong in the south-south (where Jonathan comes from), the southeast and among Christians in the north. Again, while the PDP remains weak in the Muslim north, it has gained new influential members who decamped from the APC including the former governors of Kano State and Borno State. And, of course, the PDP has the power of incumbency”, the report said.
It noted that the APC gets much of its strength from tapping into anti-Jonathan sentiments in the Muslim north and grievances among the Yoruba who feel that the Jonathan administration has ignored them in key political appointments.
It said that allegations of corruption against top PDP officials will be powerful ammunition in the hands of the APC, especially with the choice of Buhari, widely seen as not corrupt, as the party’s presidential candidate.
“The party is, however, a fragile one that seems united only in its quest to wrest the presidency from Jonathan or to have power “returned” to the north. Though the election is expected to be very competitive, the odds still favor President Jonathan”, the report concluded.