ASG Senior Advisor, Ambassador Johnnie Carson, writes in about security and economic situation in Nigeria

ASG Senior Advisor, Ambassador Johnnie Carson, comments in AllAfrica on Nigeria's rising political and economic uncertainties as the February national elections draw near.

Nigeria is scheduled to hold presidential and legislative elections on February 14. The country's presidential contest, between President Goodluck Jonathan and opposition leader Muhammadu Buhari, will increase political tensions across the country and contribute to further unrest in the north-east. Although President Jonathan appeared to have a strong edge at the start of the campaign, the elections are now expected to be closely and hotly contested...

The outcome of the presidential election is still unclear. However, as February 14 approaches, the prospects for a very close contest are increasing - and so are the prospects for post-election violence. If President Jonathan should win narrowly, with a margin less than the number of displaced eligible voters in the north unable to cast their ballots, widespread and sustained violence is almost certain to erupt.

Credible reports of vote rigging and blatant interference in the electoral process by security forces will also spark northern violence. Although some observers predict violence in the south-east if Jonathan loses, no one expects those protests to generate the type of reaction expected in the north.

To read the entire piece, please visit AllAfrica