The outcome of the 2019 elections may come down to politics of the 6 geopolitical zones. In 2015, APC defeated PDP after clearing most votes in the more populated Northern region (83.0% of N/West, 78.0% N/East votes and 59.0% of N/Central votes).
Conversely, the PDP was more popular in South (amassed 91.0% votes in the S/South and S/East) although with lower turnout. The result was close in S/West (APC: 56.0% and PDP: 42.0%) and turnout was lowest (34%).
In 2019, defections by political heavy-weights and the Shiite crisis may affect the APC’s hold in the N/West, however, the party unlikely to lose its stronghold. President Buhari’s perceived push-back of Boko Haram and his pro-poor programs may support his chances in N/East. However, this may be deflated by Alhaji Atiku who is from the Zone. The N/Central may switch overwhelmingly in favour of the PDP, no thanks to the Herdsmen’s crisis, especially in Benue and Plateau States. Kwara State will split between Senate President Saraki’s bloc and APC remnants. Overall, the APC’s popularity in the Northern region may be lower relative to 2015.
Conversely, the PDP’s popularity in the South is unlikely to change, especially in the S/South and S/East where it has held since 1999. Also, the S/West could swing in either way, with the margin between both the APC and the PDP further slashed by dissenting votes to key contenders such as Dr. Kingsley Moghalu.
United Capital Research