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[NATIONAL REBRANDING] HOW ADVERTISING AND SOCIAL MEDIA CONTRIBUTED TO NIGERIA’S FREE AND FAIR 2015 PRESIDENTIAL ELECTIONS.

The 2015 Nigerian presidential election
which generated much tension has come and gone.
According to observers, this was the first time a near
free and fair election was held as INEC introduced a
biometric data voter ID cards. Apart from confidence
the electoral body built in the opposing parties towards a transparent election, the era of hashtags contributed greatly to agencies’ optimism to take political campaigns on a digital spin. We saw APC launching ads both on digital, media, radio and print whilst animated shorts and jingles/memes contributed by notable Nigerian musical artistes weren’t left out of the bouquet.
Before the February 14, the date earlier scheduled for
the election, Jonathan was either over-confident or
completely naive about the power of the media as the opposition
gained much ground while he went about distributing foodstuff and branded gsm phones. The six weeks postponement,
according to a report, “allowed the embattled President
Goodluck Jonathan to take several pragmatic steps to
claw back lost electoral momentum”.
The March 28 presidential election was one of the most
hotly contested as PDP, APC and other major parties
massively employed the media to communicate to the
electorate. The
massive communication assisted to jump start
discussion among the citizenry as many groups and
individuals.
Akonte Ekine, a marketing communication practitioner,
who assessed the depth of communication said the
“investment in communication during this election is
unprecedented and somehow the electorate aside
knowing the issues is also a critical part of the issues.
“Even though the parties are making claims and counter
claims, the audience was able to discern the truth in the
campaign messages.”
He said that while ethnic and religious cards could have
influenced voting, the electorate was guided by their
understanding partly informed by the messages as
“some messages were apt while others were less
edifying but ultimately.”
Another marketing communication expert in Ikeja who
prefers anonymity said in in spite of the result, the
Jonathan administration deserves commendation for
enthroning an electoral process that gave Nigerians
hope of having government by the people, for the people
and for the people. As the governorship guber election gears up this weekend (april 11th) parties have started to stand on their strong points and restrategizing on their weaknesses from the just concluded presidential election despite derogatory words from the Oba of lagos to the ibos and the disappointing statements of General Muhammed Buhari at his interview on BBC saying “he is not a miracle worker-Nigerians shouldn’t expect miracles from him”.

additional credits: Daniel Obi

Compiled, edited and posted by: @djshyluckjimmy
facebook/instagram: @jimmyadesanya

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