Streets across Nigeria are plastered with campaign advertisements, T-shirts and banners as politicians woo voters ahead of polls in March. As Grace Pascoe reports, pre-election paraphernalia is big business.
It's election season in Nigeria. Political posters plaster the streets in a frantic rush to sway voters before polls open in late March. Sharing is the name of the game. And campaigning parties hand out everything from caps, t-shirts and wraps to rice, noodles and even money. J. B. Nas is campaigning for Patrick Ubah from the ruling People's Democratic Party. (SOUNDBITE) (English) ELECTION CAMPAIGN OFFICER, J.B. NAS, SAYING: "He said that we should share all these things with the people. He is making an effort for Goodluck to win." The election was pushed back by six weeks largely due to security concerns. The uncertainty caused turmoil in Nigeria's financial markets. But one industry cashing in is the printing world. Posters, banners, shirts, hats and much much more are ordered by politicians wanting to get ahead. They spend millions to the benefit of printers like Gbolahan Oshi... (SOUNDBITE) (English) PRINTER, GBOLAHAN OSHI, SAYING: "It is a period that those in the printing business always look forward to because you know, during that time, for their campaign .... I mean for politicians' campaigns they do posters, they do banners and so on." This election is likely to be the most hotly contested since the end of military rule in 1999. President Goodluck Jonathan and former military ruler Muhammadu Buhari of the All Progressives Congress are the favourites. But insecurity, corruption and the economy are big issues. Nigerians have ethnic allegiances too - it may take more than a few political gifts to secure victory.