Nigeria votes in tight Jonathan-Buhari contest

President Jonathan registers to vote after problems with the biometric card reader, 28 March 2015
After some problems with the electronic card reader, President Jonathan was finally registered manually and has now cast his vote
Gen Muhammadu Buhari arriving in his home town Daura, voting card in hand, 28 March 2015
Gen Muhammadu Buhari arriving to register in his home town Daura, voting card in hand

Voting has now begun in some areas.

The reported attacks have occurred in the north-eastern Gombe state. Boko Haram had threatened to disrupt the poll.

At the scene: Will Ross, BBC News, Abuja

You need a lot patience to vote here. At one polling station in Abuja, the queues are long with women and men lining up separately, all clutching their new voter cards.

As in many parts of Nigeria, there have been some logistical problems with electronic card readers – and this is slowing things down.

Up in north-east Nigeria people who have had to flee their homes because of the jihadist insurgency are voting in the camps where they now live.

As millions of voters queued outside polling stations, the Inec website was briefly hacked.

A group calling itself the Nigeria Cyber Army placed a message on the website warning Inec not to rig the elections, before normal service was resumed.

Other incidents reported include a controlled car bomb explosion at polling station in Enugu state after the authorities discovered a car bomb and, according to the TMG, intimidation of election monitors at three polling stations in the south.

Nigeria at a glance:

  • Two main presidential candidates:

Muhammadu Buhari, All Progressives Congress (APC), Muslim northerner, ex-military ruler, fourth presidential bid

Goodluck Jonathan, People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Christian southerner, incumbent president, second-term bid

  • Years of military rule ended in 1999 and the PDP has been in power ever since
  • Nigeria is Africa’s largest economy and leading oil producer
  • With a population of more than 170m, it is also Africa’s most populous nation

The People’s Democratic Party (PDP) has dominated Nigerian politics since 1999, but Gen Buhari’s All Progressives Congress (APC) is viewed as a serious challenge.

Some 800 people were killed after the 2011 contest between Mr Jonathan and Gen Buhari, a former military ruler, who alleged fraud.

On Friday, the Nigerian army said it had retaken the town of Gwoza, believed to be the headquarters of Boko Haram, one of the last places still under its control.