People hold signs to protest postponement of elections in Abuja. (File: AFP)
Lagos – The All Progressive Congress party (APC) has reportedly described the decision by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to delay the country's general elections as a "clearly major setback for Nigerian democracy" and "highly provocative", according to The Star.
With just a week to go before the country's general elections, INEC decided to postpone the polls by six weeks.
The elections have been pushed from 13 February to 28 March, while the state gubernatorial and legislative votes have been moved to 11 April.
Watch the video below as INEC makes the announcement of the delay.
The United States on Sunday said it was disappointed by INEC's decision.
"Political interference with the Independent National Commission is unacceptable, and it is critical that the government not use security concerns as a pretext for impending the democratic process," Secretary of State John Kerry was reported as saying.
Security reasons were stated as the major reason for postponing the elections.
The delay was set to give a new multinational force – made up of at least 8 700 troops, police and civilians to secure north-eastern areas under the sway of Boko Haram Islamist insurgents.
There were fears that millions could be disenfranchised if the vote went ahead while the Boko Haram held a large swath of the northeast.
According to Africa Check, this is not the first time that INEC has delayed a presidential vote. The commission did so in 2011, but this time it has come "in the context of a far tighter political race".
Read some of the tweets below as people react the postponement of the elections.