“The international community has high expectations that Nigeria will provide leadership in setting a high standard for this election,” Ban said in a statement.
The UN chief called on Nigerians to vote in large numbers and voiced hope that the presidential and parliamentary elections will be “transparent, inclusive and peaceful”.
Nigerians head to the polls on Saturday in one of the closest races in the country’s history, pitting President Goodluck Jonathan against former military ruler Muhammadu Buhari.
Nigeria has a history of election violence and both candidates have appealed for calm to prevent a repeat of 2011, when 1,000 people were killed in clashes after the results were announced.
Ban called on the candidates and their supporters to “resolve disputes that may arise from the electoral process through peaceful means.”
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