Nigeria clears 18 candidates for presidency

95 million Nigerians have registered to vote - AFP

Nigeria’s electoral commission has cleared 18 candidates to contest the presidential election scheduled for February next year.

In a list published on Tuesday, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) noted that 18 parties had fielded presidential candidates and their running mates.

The list include the names of the 75-year-old veteran presidential contestant and former vice-president, Atiku Abubakar of the opposition Peoples' Democratic Party, and former Lagos governor Ahmed Bola Tinubu, 70, of the ruling All Progressives Congress.

It also includes the 60-year-old former governor of Anambra state, Peter Obi of Labour Party, who is seen as a third force.

Election campaigns officially begin next week on Wednesday.

Rampant insecurity, chronic unemployment and a worsening economic outlook are among issues the candidates are expected to address.

Nigeria has a population of more than 200 million people, out of which more than 95 million voters have registered to participate in the coming election.

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