Home Project-material SOCIAL MEDIA AND DEMOCRATIC ELECTIONS IN NIGERIA: A STUDY OF THE 2015 PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION

SOCIAL MEDIA AND DEMOCRATIC ELECTIONS IN NIGERIA: A STUDY OF THE 2015 PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION

Dept: POLITICAL SCIENCE File: Word(doc) Chapters: 1-5 Views: 1

Abstract

This study analyzed how online news media covered 2015 presidential election in Nigeria. The aim is to establish the level of attention different parties received, portrayal of parties and direction of reports. Three online media (Sahara Reporters, Scan news and Premium Times) were purposively selected. The period of the study was 1st January to 27st March 2015. A total of hundred and twenty-three (323) items (news and feature articles) that touched on 2015 presidential election were generated through Google search and websites of the three media. One hundred and sixty nine (169) items were randomly selected as the sample size. Data were analyzed using frequencies and simple percentages. Findings revealed that PDP and APC received most attention from the media with PDP having the highest number of reports. Aside the two parties, all the remaining parties were mostly invincible in the reports published by the media during the period studied. It was also discovered that the media were
1.1       Background to the Study

Democracy is widely acknowledged as the best form of government in most parts of the world today. Elections, which represent the most modern and universally accepted process through which individuals are chosen to represent a body or community in a larger entity or government is one of the cardinal features of democracy (Nwabueze, Obasi & Obi 2012). This is so because in a democracy, the authority of the government derives from the consent of the governed. This is perhaps why democracy is commonly referred to as “the government of the people by the people and for the people”. Usually, a democratic election would characteristically be competitive, periodic, inclusive, definitive and free and fair (Chukwu, 2007). Nigeria’s democracy may be considered nascent when compared to the older democracies of the western world. Be that as it may, the 2011 general election has gone down in the history of the country as one of the best elections in the last few years of uninterrupted civilian rule in the land. (Udejinta, 2011), observes that one remarkable thing about the 2011 general elections was the adoption of social media especially the Facebook by the politicians, the political parties and the electorates as a platform for political participation. The importance attached to social media in the 2011 general elections was better explained by President Goodluck Jonathan


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