As the world welcomes the New Year, 2023, Africa did so differently, as there have been notable key dates in the year meant to usher in new governments in 24 countries on the continent.

According to the Electoral Institute for Sustainable Democracy in Africa, countries like Nigeria, Gabon, Liberia, Libya, Madagascar, Sierra Leone, South Sudan, Somaliland, Sudan and Zimbabwe will hold their presidential elections.

Other countries include the Central African Republic, Comoros, Côte d’Ivoire, Djibouti, Egypt, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Mali, Togo, and Swaziland for regional, district, and local elections.

With Nigeria being one of the world’s flashpoints, the Independent National Electoral Commission has reaffirmed its commitment to ensure free, fair and credible elections are scheduled for February 23.

The President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retired), corroborated INEC’s position on conducting free and fair elections in an interactive session titled “A Conversation with President Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria”, jointly organized by the Institute of Peace of the United States, the International Republican Institute, the National Endowment for Democracy, and the International Foundation for Electoral Systems.

He said: “INEC is ready because I made sure that they were given all the resources that they asked for because I don’t want any excuse that the government denied them the funds.”

In the run up to the elections, 18 political parties have fielded candidates and their running mates, the main ones being Bola Ahmed Tinubu of the Congress of All Progressives; Abubakar Atiku of the Peoples’ Democratic Party; Peter Obi of the Labor Party and Rabiu Kwankwaso of the New Nigeria People’s Party.

Others are Imumolen Christopher (Accord Party), Al-Mustapha Hamza (Action Alliance), Sowore Omoyele (African Action Congress), Kachikwu Dumebi (African Democratic Congress), Sani Yabagi Yusuf (Democratic Action Party), Umeadi Peter Nnanna (All Progressives Grand Alliance), Ojei Princess Chichi – Allied People’s Movement (APM), Nnamdi Charles Osita (People’s Action Party), Adenuga Sunday Oluwafemi (Starter Party), Osakwe Felix Johnson (National Rescue Movement), Abiola Latifu Kolawole (People’s Redemption Party), Adebayo Adewole Ebenezer (Social Democratic Party), Ado-Ibrahim Abdumalik (Young Progressive Party) and Nwanyanwu Daniel Daberechukwu (Zenith Labor Party).

Meanwhile, the following table shows the list of African countries that will hold elections in 2023, including the venues of the contest and their dates;

1. Benin

National Assembly

June 24, 2023

2. Central African Republic

Local

Jan 2023

3. Comoros

island governors

2023

4. Ivory Coast

Local

2023

5. Djibouti

National Assembly

2023

6. Egypt

Local

2023

7. Gabon

Presidential, Legislative and Local

2023

8.Ghanaian

District, local and unit

2023

9. Guinean

Local

2023

10. Guinea-Bissau

National People’s Assembly and Senate

2023

11.Liberian

President

October 10, 2023

12. Libya

Parliamentary

2023

President

2023

13.Madagascar

President

2023

14. Mali

Local

June 2023

House of Representatives and Senate

October and November 2023

15. Mauritania

National, Regional and Local Assembly

2023

16.Mozambique

Local

October 11, 2023

17. Nigerian

President, House of Representatives and Senate

February 25, 2023

State Assemblies and Governors

March 11, 2023

18. Sierra Leone

President, Parliamentary and Local Councils

June 24, 2023

19. Somaliland (autonomous)

Presidential

2023

20. South Sudan

President, National Assembly, local

2023

21. Sudan

Presidential, Council of States, National Assembly, State Legislatures, State Governors, local

July 2023

22. Swaziland

Senate, House of Assembly, Urban Local, Tinkhundla

2023

23.Togo

Regional

2023

24. Zimbabwe

President, Senate, House of Assembly and Local

2023