Nigeria’s presidential and parliamentary elections have been delayed for a week.
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) made the announcement just five hours before the polls were due to open on Saturday.
“Proceeding with the election as scheduled is no longer feasible,” commission chairman Mahmood Yakubu said, citing logistical issues.
He said the difficult decision was needed to ensure a free and fair vote.
The presidential and parliamentary votes have been rescheduled for Saturday 23 February.
Governorship, state assembly and federal area council elections have been rescheduled until Saturday 9 March.
The announcement came after an emergency meeting at the INEC headquarters in the capital, Abuja.
Nigeria’s two main political parties, the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), swiftly condemned the move and accused each other of trying to manipulate the vote.
Why have elections been postponed?
Mr Yakubu said the decision was made following a “careful review” of the election “operational plan”, adding that there was a “determination to conduct free, fair and credible elections”.
He said the delay was necessary to give the commission time to address vital issues and “maintain the quality of our elections”, but did not provide further details.