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Buhari asks members of his cabinet to resign if they are candidates in next year’s elections

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Nigeria’s president Muhammadu Buhari has asked his ministers to resign if they are willing to stand in next year’s general elections, according to the Information minister, Lai Mohammed. Buhari is said to be giving members of the government until May 16 to do so.

Nigerians will head to the polls in February next year to choose a new president, state governors, senators and members of the House of Representatives.

At least five cabinet members are running for the elections, including the Transport and Labour ministers. Lai Mohammed said vice president Yemi Osinbajo was excluded from that directive as he was jointly elected with the current president. Osinbajo is running for Buhari’s party, All progressive Congress and the head of state is no longer a candidate after two terms in office.

This directive was made possible by an electoral law amended earlier this year which indicates no politcal appointees are allowed to be candidates in party primaries or even vote.