|Rupiah Banda during Kenya's 2013 elections|
By Paul Shalala in Johannesburg, South Africa
Former Zambian President Rupiah Banda is next week expected to co-lead an election observation mission for the the United States-based National Democratic Institute for International Affairs (NDI.
On 14 February, 68.8 million voters in Africa's largest democracy will be choosing their leaders in the general election.
The presidential election is pitting incumbent President Goodluck Jonathan and former military ruler General Muhamadu Buhari.
"In his invitation letter, NDI senior associate and regional director for Central and West Africa Dr Christopher Fomunyoh said President Banda’s experience will greatly benefit the NDI delegation as Africa’s most populous nation faces the most competitive election since the transition from military to civilian rule in 1999, " read part of the emailed statement to the media.
Mr Banda will co-lead the NDI delegation with former US Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs Johnnie Carson, former Niger Prime Minister Mahamadu Danda, former Mauritius Prime Minister Navin Ramgoolam and former governor of Colorado Bill Ritter.
The fourth Zambian President has previously led election observation missions to the Democratic Republic of Congo, Kenya and Sierra Leone under the Carter Center and to Lesotho under the Electoral Institute for Sustainable Democracy in Africa.