The International Republican Institute, IRI, and the National Democratic Institute, NDI, have announced the deployment of a joint international election observation mission, IEOM, in Nigeria.
The 40-member delegation comprises political and civic leaders, elections experts, and regional specialists from 20 countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America and North America.
The team already received accreditation from the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to observe the February 25 presidential poll.
Led by ex-Malawi President Joyce Banda, it includes Johnnie Carson, former U.S. Assistant Secretary of State; IRI Board Member Constance Berry Newman; NDI Board Member Stacey Abrams, among others.
NDI President Derek Mitchell, and IRI President Daniel Twining will also participate in the mission which conducted pre-election assessment in July and December 2022.
Banda, according to a statement on Monday, noted that the delegation is in Nigeria to show support for, and solidarity with the country’s democrats.
“These elections are of tremendous significance for the country and the region as a whole. I encourage all voters to participate and make their voices heard through the ballot box,” she urged.
In his remarks, Mitchell described the joint deployment as a testament to the continuous commitment of the organizations to Nigeria’s democracy.
“We are here in support of credible, free and fair elections and urge all electoral stakeholders to remain peaceful throughout the election process,” said IRI President Twining.
The team will conduct an analysis of the process in various areas, including election administration, citizen participation, gender and inclusion, election security, legal framework, parties and campaigning.
On Saturday, IRI/NDI will visit polling units in 20 states across all six regions to observe the administration of the poll, including the opening, voting, tabulation, transmission and publication of results.
IRI and NDI deployed missions to every general election in Nigeria since 1999 transition from military to civilian rule. The Institutes have observed over 200 elections in more than 50 countries in the last 30 years.