EOS Alerts 11-2-2019
Nigeria: DFAT Issue Updated Travel Advice
Tensions are rising ahead of Nigeria’s 16 February Presidential election and the 2 March gubernatorial and state assembly elections. Instances of election-related violence have already been reported throughout the country, with further outbreaks of unrest likely to occur in the lead up to and around both polling dates. Tensions have been further compounded since incumbent President Buhari suspended ChiefJustice Walter Onnoghen on 25 January, triggering unrest in Abuja and Kaduna. Expect a heightened and visible security force presence in urban areas and remain vigilant when in proximity to any election-related campaign rallies. Take precautions such as avoiding large crowds, government buildings and polling stations, and monitor the situation closely. Polling will take place from 0800 – 14—LT on 16 February.
11 February 2019 | PORT HARCOURT | The PDP are hosting a campaign rally at the Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium in Port Harcourt from 1000 LT on 11 February (already underway). The stadium shares a road with Port Harcourt International Airport. Expect congestion on the road at this time and leave additional time for travel.
12 February 2019 | LAGOS | The PDP are holding a campaign rally at Tafawa Balewa Square in Lagos from 12000 LT on 12 February. Avoid the area and plot route bypasses.
On 11 February, the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade's Smartraveller service issued updated travel advice for Nigeria. “Presidential elections will be held on 16 February. Political gatherings and demonstrations are becoming increasingly frequent in major Nigerian cities. Avoid rallies, demonstrations and large crowds as they could turn violent. Monitor local media for news of unrest. Telecommunications networks may be disrupted in the event of civil unrest or crisis. The Australian High Commission in Abuja relocated to new premises on 11 January and provides limited passport and consular services. Contact the High Commission first to clarify what services are available and/or to make an appointment. We haven’t changed our level of advice – reconsider your need to travel to Nigeria due to the high threat of terrorist attack and kidnapping. Higher levels apply in some parts of the country.”