The north central region is one of the six geopolitical zones of Nigeria. It comprises the Federal Capital Territory and six other states, including Benue, Kogi, Kwara, Nasarawa, Niger, and Plateau. The region houses popular cities in the country, including Abuja, Jos, Makurdi, Suleja, Ilorin, etc. 

INEC registration 
The data by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) places the north central as the third geopolitical zone with the highest number of registered voters after first place northwest and second place southwest. The north central boasts of 15.33 million registered voters by INEC’s register. 

State of play 
There is no current leading candidate or running mate with birth ties to the third largest geopolitical zone by registered voters. For this reason, the north central represents the only geopolitical region where presidential candidates have a near equal chance of politicking. 

  • However, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the presidential candidate of the All-Progressive Congress (APC), who has faced several allegations recently, has a lead over his counterparts Peter Obi of Labour Party and Atiku Abubakar of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) as five out of the six states in the region are governed by members of his party. 

The big picture 
As the turnout for even the “least expected political party” in campaign rallies has demonstrated over the last few weeks, the choice of a candidate for any electable position is ultimately in the hands of Nigerians. However, a well-planned out grassroots exercise can go a long way to influence the people’s choice. Hence, the repeated visits and donations in times of crisis of presidential candidates to the region. 

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