Buhari is running for a second term in office (image courtesy State House)

The United States Institute of Peace (USIP) has denied predicting that President Muhammadu Buhari would win the 2019 Presidential election.

USIP was reported to have said that Buhari may emerge winner of the election.

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The body noted that though many Nigerians stated that the Buhari administration had not met their expectations, this may not cost the ruling All Progressives Congress its hold on power.

The Institute said this in a report on the forthcoming general election, which it claimed was based on its interactions with Nigerians from different sectors.

The USIP report contradicted the two predictions by The Economist magazine, which stated that Buhari would be defeated in the February poll.

In a statement on its website on Tuesday, the institute says it does not predict election outcomes and “has not done so in this case.”

The body stated that it was strictly a non-partisan institution, stressing that its work focuses entirely on preventing violence.

The statement read: “A few Nigerian newspapers reported erroneously this week that the U.S. Institute of Peace has made a prediction about the possible outcome of Nigeria’s 2019 presidential election.

“USIP never makes predictions about election outcomes and has not done so in this case. The Institute’s work on elections is confined to helping nations avoid electoral violence.

“The erroneous news accounts misrepresent USIP’s recent 20-page report on the risks to a peaceful 2019 election in Nigeria.

“This study is based on interviews across the country with more than 200 Nigerian respondents—election administrators, political party representatives, security officials, civil society and youth groups, the media, traditional and religious leaders, prominent community figures, business people, academics and others.

“The USIP report noted that, in the interviews, “some respondents” discussed their own views of Nigerian public perceptions about an election outcome.

“A Nigerian news account mis-reported this passage as a USIP prediction of the outcome, and other Nigerian news organizations repeated the error.

“As USIP is a strictly nonpartisan institution, its work on elections focuses entirely on preventing violence.”