Muhammadu Buhari has been elected the new president of Nigeria, Africa’s largest economy, this was revaled after the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) announced on Tuesday the final tally for Borno.
Three decades after seizing power in a military coup, Buhari has become the first Nigerian to oust a president through the ballot box.
According to NigeriaElections.org, Buhari’s APC obtained 15,4 million votes (53.96%) and Goodluck Jonathan’s PDP 12,853,162 (44.96%).
Earlier in the day, Buhari’s party declared his win, adding that the country was “witnessing history”, according to Reuters.
“This is the first time in Nigeria that a sitting government will be voted out of power using purely democratic means,” APC spokesman Lai Mohammed told the news agency.
“The people of Nigeria have taken over.”
According to Reuters, “as the scale of this weekend’s electoral defeat became clear, President Goodluck Jonathan called Buhari on Tuesday to concede defeat – an unprecedented step that should help to defuse anger among Jonathan’s supporters”.
Buhari will take over Africa’s biggest economy on 29 May 2015 and will be the 15th head of state.
In a report by Renaissance Capital titled Nigeria has spoken: Buhari looks set to win presidency, the firm stated that a Buhari win implies reformist policies, including austere fiscal policy and a clampdown on graft.
“In addition to a crackdown on corruption and more effective handling of the Boko Haram insurgency, we expect austere fiscal policy to be imposed,” it said.
“Less corruption could lower the cost of doing business, particularly for small businesses, and a more secure Nigeria would allow isolated regions to re-engage with the rest of the economy.”
However, the firm added that the stalling of economic activity under a first-term president tends to be protracted, as it implies a mostly new cabinet and potential restructuring of ministries and departments.
“As government tends to be the biggest economic entity in developing economies, this transition implies economic activity will remain subdued for most of 2015,” said Renaissance Capital.
“The fact that Buhari would head up a coalition may stall decision-making and add to pressure on fiscal resources, as he tries to reward the coalition’s constituents for their support. That said, we expect he would be constrained by limited fiscal resources.”
– additional reporting by Reuters