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Ex-Malawi President, Banda, leads 40-member election observer to Nigeria



A former Malawian President, Dr. Joyce Banda, will lead a 40-member international election observation mission to monitor next Saturday’s presidential and parliamentary elections in Nigeria.

The team was deployed jointly by a United States-based political think-tank, International Republican Institute, and the National Democratic Institute (NDI).

The delegation which includes political leaders, civil society elections experts, and regional specialists from 20 countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America, and North America received accreditation from the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Monday.

Banda will be joined by the President and CEO of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Amb. Mark Green, former Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of African Affairs at the U.S. Department of State, Amb. Johnnie Carson, NDI President, Amb. Derek Mitchell and IRI President, Dr. Daniel Twining.

Others are IRI board member, Constance Berry Newman, Non-Resident Senior Fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Africa Centre, NDI board member, Stacey Abrams, and American political leader, and IRI board member, Dana White, among others.

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The two organisations have deployed international election observation missions to every general election in Nigeria since 1999.

Banda said the elections are of great significance for Nigeria and Africa as a whole.

She said: “I encourage all voters to participate and make their voices heard through the ballot box.”

Former South African President, Thabo Mbeki, will also lead a team of Commonwealth election observers to observe the elections.

Mbeki was received by INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, on Monday in Abuja.

The former South African leader urged political parties, candidates, and their supporters to conduct themselves peacefully during the elections.

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