Buhari vs Atiku: 9 international analysts predict winner of 2019 presidential election

Few days to the rescheduled presidential election coming up on Saturday, February 23, there are still heated arguments, debates, Online opinion Polls, prophecies and forecasts/predictions on who will emerge as Nigeria’s next president.
The two leading candidates are President Muhammadu Buhari of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and Atiku Abubakar of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
A collection of eight predictions by international analysts, published by Bloomberg, shows that the 2019 presidential election will be keenly contested by the two leading candidates as the election has “split analysts down the middle”.
Out of the eight forecasts by eight analysts, four predicted President Buhari will win a second term while the remaining four also predicted a victory for Atiku.
Four predictions in favour of President Muhammadu Buhari
President Buhari during a campaign rally in Imo state.
1. Control Risks
Bloomberg reports that Control Risks, a London-based company, predicted that President Buhari will win by a small margin due to the divisions within the PDP, Atiku’s party, and its lacklustre campaigning.
2. Eurasia Group
According to Eurasia Group’s forecast, President Buhari has a 60% chance of winning. The New York risk firm said it predicted victory for Buhari because his cause has been helped by some key PDP politicians, including Senate president Bukola Saraki and governors in the southeast, who didn’t allegedly give active support to Atiku’s campaign.
3. NKC African Economics
Jared Jeffery, an analyst at NKC African Economics, a research house based in Paarl, South Africa, said though President Buhari’s approval ratings have plunged since he became president four years ago, incumbent presidents in Africa win around 85% of the elections they contest. He added that Buhari is from the northwest, which is the region with the most voters, and he’s maintained an “image of incorruptibility.”
4. Capital Economics
John Ashbourne, an economist at the London-based research group, said: “The advantages of incumbency will help President Buhari clinch a narrow win”.
Five predictions in favour of Atiku Abubakar
Atiku during his campaign in Lagos.
1.Nigeriansdecide.org Online Opinion Poll
With just few days to the February 23 rescheduled presidential and National Assembly election, the dynamics of the race for the nation’s top job indicate an interestingly tight and tough contest between the two leading candidates of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Atiku Abubakar and the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Muhammadu Buhari.
Leakblast recent field intelligence gathering from the Nigeria’s largest online opinion poll known as Nigeriansdecide.org, which reports a tight and tough contest, however, presents both state-by-state and geo-political zones analyses of what is obtainable by each of the two front-runners in the states, thus giving an evolving picture of what might ultimately be the regional standing of the candidates and their parties. Alhaji Atiku Abubakar is the leading presidential candidate in the Nigeriansdecide.org Online Opinion Poll as at February 20, 2019.
2.Fitch Solutions
Fitch Solutions predicted that Atiku has the edge given how Buhari “struggled to fulfill key election pledges’’ made when he came to office in 2015. The London-based research house also said Atiku may be able to take a large chunk of votes in the north, a region Buhari dominated last time when he was facing former President Goodluck Jonathan.
3. Songhai Advisory
Songhai Advisory in its forecast said Atiku will benefit from the support of key powerbrokers, including ex-army chiefs and former heads of state such as Ibrahim Babangida and Olusegun Obasanjo. It specifically highlighted Obasanjo’s endorsement of Atiku, saying the latter “continues to sway election outcomes’’ and since he left office in 2007.
4.Teneo Intelligence
Teneo Intelligence predicted that Atiku will get up to 57% of the votes, against 42% for Buhari if the election is free and fair.
5.Verisk Maplecroft
Ed Hobey-Hamsher, an Africa analyst at the Bath, UK-based firm predicted that Buhari has just 41% chance of victory. It said that President Buhari’s chances have been damaged, in part, by recent military setbacks against Boko Haram and other militants affiliated to Islamic State in the northeast.
The disclosure was reportedly made by a top official of the electoral commission.
Leakblast.com gathers that the undisclosed source said that as at 4pm on Monday, February 18, the electoral commission had achieved over 90% success rate of deployment. Besides the reconfiguration of card readers and alleged sabotage, INEC had cited logistical challenges as reasons for its postponement of the elections.
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