Everything You Need to Know About My Latest Book


NSOF cover

You may have heard that my new book will soon be published. Please see below for information about where and when you can get the book, how much it costs, and a list of answers to all those questions you are about to ask me… ;-)

FAQs:

Where can I pre-order the book?

From Amazon.

When can I order?

Now.

How much will the book cost?

£25 UK pounds sterling

When will the book be delivered?

July 2019

Is there a Kindle or other e-book version of the book?

Not yet.

How can I buy your previous books?

From these places.

What is the book about?

It is a sequel to my previous books Oil, Politics, and Violence and Soldiers of Fortune. The latest book covers the Abacha to Obasanjo years in Nigeria. The book aims to be the leading authority and definitive reference point for a seminal decade of crisis that shaped modern Nigeria. It is the third in the author’s trilogy of books on Nigerian history (each examining a separate decade at a time).

Can you tell me a bit more about the book’s content?

Sure. With excellent background that can serve as a primer for the uninitiated, and copious new information to amaze even the most seasoned Nigeria expert, this third book of Max Siollun’s trilogy on Nigeria is essential reading.

The silhouette of military rule still looms over Nigeria nearly 20 years after the soldiers departed. Key personalities of the military rule era remain active in Nigerian politics (including current President Muhammadu Buhari). With a breathtaking “I was there” style, the book examines multiple near-death experiences that Nigeria experienced during its last bout of military rule.

Although the book is about a nation, it also follows the trajectory of three mesmerising individuals. Moshood Abiola was the multi-billionaire friend of successive military governments who was elected president, then had his presidency voided by the generals who made him rich. General Abacha was the mysterious military ruler under whose watch Abiola was arrested and detained, and pro-democracy activists (including Abiola’s wife) assassinated. The third protagonist Olusegun Obasanjo emerged from prison to return to power as an unlikely conduit of democracy.

The author has gained access to sources and documents that were not available to earlier researchers. These sources and documents make this book the most in-depth “lift the lid” account of the Abacha-Obasanjo years ever published.

 

 

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Book Cover for Soldiers of Fortune Sequel


NSOF cover

 

Ladies and gentlemen. It is finally here! The long awaited sequels to my books Oil, Politics, and Violence, and Soldiers of Fortune is almost upon us. I have attached a copy of the book cover above.

If you would like to pre-order the book, please DM your e-mail address to me on Twitter.

#BokoHaram: The Women Who Resolve Conflict


Good programme called The Conversation by the BBC which highlights the work that Dr Fatima Akilu of Nigeria has done with Boko Haram members. Akilu is a psychologist, and was formerly the Director of Behavioural Analysis and Strategic Communication in the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA). Dr Akilu used to work as a psychologist for the UK’s National Health Service until she was hired by Nigeria’s National Security Adviser to assist in Nigeria’s battle with Boko Haram. She counsels and deradicalises former Boko Haram members and women who were married to members of the group or kidnapped by them.

You can listen to a clip here and the entire programme here.

#NIGERIADECIDES2019 – ELECTION RESULTS RELEASED BY #INEC SO FAR


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The APC has won in 17 of the 28 states where results have been released by INEC so far and Buhari leads Atiku by 3.5 million votes. Keep checking back as I will update this page as results continue to be announced.

#NIGERIADECIDES2019 – ELECTION RESULTS RELEASED BY #INEC SO FAR

KEY:

AAC – African Action Congress
ADC – African Democratic Congress
ADP – Action Democratic Party
APC – All Progressives Congress
PDP – People’s Democratic Party
SDP – Social Democratic Party

Winning party in bold text

STATE PARTY TOTAL REGISTERED VOTERS TOTAL ACCREDITED VOTERS TOTAL VOTES CAST INVALID VOTES
Abia AAC: 212 ADC: 336 ADP: 131 APC: 85,058 PDP: 219,698 SDP: 472 1,793,861 361,561 344,471 21,180
Adamawa  

AAC: 282

ADC: 3,989

ADP: 329

APC: 378,078

PDP: 410,266

SDP: 978

 

1,959,322 874,920 860,756 49,222
Akwa Ibom          
Anambra AAC: 124 ADC: 227 ADP: 427 APC: 33,298 PDP: 524,738 SDP: 932 2,389,332 675,273 625,035 19,301
Bauchi AAC: 183 ADC: 296 ADP: 123 APC: 798,428 PDP: 209,313 SDP: 516 2,453,512 1,075,330 1,061,955 37,648
Bayelsa          
Benue AAC: 309 ADC: 554 ADP: 312 APC: 347,668 PDP: 356,817 SDP: 4,927 2,391,276 786,069 763,872 34,960
Borno          
Cross River          
Delta          
Ebonyi AAC: 205 ADC: 213 ADP: 102 APC: 90,726 PDP: 258,573 SDP: 452 1,392,931 391,747 379,394 20,263
Edo AAC: 3,106 ADC: 850 ADP: 714 APC: 267,842 PDP: 275,691 SDP: 184 2,150,127 604,915 599,228 38,517
Ekiti AAC: 400 ADC: 406 ADP: 126 APC: 219,231 PDP: 154,032 SDP: 48 899,919 395,741 393,709 12,577
Enugu AAC: 219 ADC: 348 ADP: 137 APC: 54,423 PDP: 355,553 SDP: 130 1,935,168 452,765 451,063 30,049
FCT AAC: 583 ADC: 246 ADP: 145 APC: 152,224 PDP: 259,997 SDP: 410

 

1,335,015 467,784 451,408 423,951
Gombe AAC: 165 ADC: 248 ADP: 135 APC: 402,961 PDP: 138,484 SDP: 248 1,385,191 604,240 580,649 26,446
Imo AAC: 467 ADC: 541 ADP: 421 APC: 140,463 PDP: 334,923 SDP: 772 2,037,569 585,741 542,777 31,191
Jigawa AAC: 226 ADC: 261 ADP: 107 APC: 794,738 PDP: 289,895 SDP: 5,011 2,104,889 1,171,801 1,149,922 43,678
Kaduna AAC: 243 ADC: 558 ADP: 227 APC: 993,445 PDP: 649,612 SDP: 1,737 3,861,033 1,757,868 1,709,005 45,402
Kano AAC: 416

ADC: 591

ADP: 439

APC: 1,464,768 PDP: 391,593 SDP: 635

5,391,581 2,006,410 1,964,751 73,617
Katsina AAC: 186
ADC: 237
ADP: 140
APC: 1,232,133 PDP: 308,056 SDP: 150
3,210,422 1,628,865 1,619,185 63,712
Kebbi          
Kogi AAC: 250 ADC: 4,369 ADP: 499 APC: 285,894 PDP: 218,207 SDP: 2,226 1,640,449 570,773 553,496 32,480
Kwara AAC: 401

ADC: 456

ADP: 203

APC: 308,984

PDP: 138,184

SDP: 212

 

1,401 895 489,482 486,254 26,578
Lagos AAC: 8,910 ADC: 2,915 ADP: 1,262 APC: 580,825 PDP: 448,015 SDP: 770 6,313,507 1,196,490 1,156,590 67,023
Nasarawa AAC: 75

ADC: 339 ADP: 107 APC: 289,903 PDP: 283,847 SDP: 359

1,509,481 613,720 599,399 18,621
Niger AAC: 324 ADC: 588 ADP: 2,582 APC: 612,371 PDP: 218,052 SDP: 239 2,375,568 911,964 896,976 45,039
Ogun AAC: 3,196 ADC: 25,283 ADP: 7,705 APC: 281,762 PDP: 194,655 SDP: 1,374 2,336,887 613,397 605,938 41,682
Ondo AAC: 4,414 ADC: 6,296 ADP: 1,005 APC: 241,769 PDP: 275,901 SDP: 1,618 1,812,567 598,586 586,827 30,833
Osun AAC: 1,022 ADC: 1,525 ADP: 9,057 APC: 347,634 PDP: 337,377 SDP: 259 1,674,729 732,984 731,882 17,200
Oyo AAC: 4,041 ADC: 40,830 ADP: 25,384 APC: 365,229 PDP: 366,690 SDP: 766 2,796,542 905,007 891,080 54,549
Plateau AAC: 268 ADC: 590 ADP: 1,395 APC: 468,555 PDP: 548,665 SDP: 599 2,423,381 1,074,042 1,062,862 28,009
Rivers          
Sokoto          
Taraba AAC: 116

ADC: 211

ADP: 136

APC: 324,906 PDP: 374,743 SDP: 862

1,777,105 756,111 741,564 28,687
Yobe AAC: 137 ADC: 162 ADP: 107 APC: 497,914 PDP: 50,763 SDP: 180 1,365,913 601,059 586,137 26,772
Zamfara          

 

 

Stears Business are doing a wonderful job of tracking the results live here.

You can also follow the results live on Channels TV.

Over 86% of PVCs Collected – #NigeriaDecides


PVCs

With only 2 days left to Nigeria’s next presidential election this Saturday, the Independent National Electoral Commission has confirmed that 72.7 million of the 84 million Permanent Voters Cards (PVCs) have been collected by voters.

One trend in the PVC collected data that helps President Buhari is that the north-west (where he is from) has an extraordinarily high rate of PVC collection. 98% of voters in his home state of Katsina have collected their PVCs. 11 of the 15 states where more than 90% of PVCs have been collected are in the north. That is good news for Buhari.

You can see a state by state breakdown of the number of registered voters and collected PVCs in each state of Nigeria below:

 

INEC collected PVCs

#NigeriaDecides – What is at Stake?


This is my latest article in Foreign Policy regarding Nigeria’s upcoming election:

Nigeria Is Headed for Dramatic Changes No Matter Who Wins
The issue of restructuring the country’s delicate federal system has long been a taboo. Both candidates have now put it front and center, ensuring that reforms are on the way.

 

By Max Siollun

 

On Feb. 16, Nigerians will go to the polls for a presidential election. At stake is not only who will be president but also fundamental issues about the structure of the Nigerian state and relations between its constituent units. Who should control the country’s oil resources and security forces? In which areas should the federal and state governments have preeminence over each other? These previously taboo questions have been elevated as key topics on the national political agenda. Regardless of who wins, President Muhammadu Buhari of the ruling All Progressives Congress and his main opposition rival, Atiku Abubakar of the People’s Democratic Party, have opened the door to political forces they cannot control or stop.

 

At first glance Buhari and Atiku (as he is known in Nigeria) appear to be opposites. Buhari is austere, tough on corruption, and lacking in flair. The euphoria that greeted his election victory nearly four years ago has dissipated, and some say his antiquated fiscal approach has contributed to economic stagnation. Last year, former President Olusegun Obasanjo (who remains a vital kingmaker despite leaving power nearly 12 years ago) told Buhari to “dismount from the horse” and retire from politics.

 

Atiku is a gregarious multibillionaire businessman and veteran politician who is seen as business-savvy and has promised economic liberalization, but he has been dogged by corruption allegations. It seems that voters can have a fight against corruption or economic stimulus, but not both. But there is a third and more serious issue bubbling beneath the surface.

 

Similar levels of support for the two main candidates have made the election result too close to call. Since both men are ethnic Fulani Muslims from northern Nigeria, neither can resort to pandering based on ethno-regional or religious sentiment to take votes away from the other, as is frequently the case in Nigerian elections. Due to Nigeria’s gentleman’s agreement to rotate the presidency between the country’s north and south, there is not much southern ferment against the regional origin of the two leading candidates, with the expectation that the south will have its turn in power next time.

 

Yet between the candidates, the pressure to secure a decisive advantage has changed the political narrative and forced both Buhari and Atiku to address uncomfortable existential questions about Nigeria that were delicately circumvented by past governments. For the past 20 years since Nigeria returned to democracy, the country has been stuck with a highly centralized federal structure bequeathed to it by past military governments. This structure gives the federal government huge power over states, control of the country’s oil deposits and security forces, and the power to declare a state of emergency in any state whether or not that state consents. Rather than being reservoirs for local interests, Nigeria’s states are consequently little more than conduits for the implementation of federal government policies.

 

Atiku has described Nigeria’s current political system as “unworkable” and has advocated “devolution of powers and resources to states and local governments” and greater autonomy for states. To combat the insecurity that has led to the military being deployed in at least 32 of Nigeria’s 36 states, he also supports allowing Nigeria’s states to form their own police forces to reinforce Nigeria’s currently federally controlled military and police forces. Buhari is a conservative and has rejected a political restructuring of Nigeria.

 

Such proposals will reverberate at both ends of Nigeria. The issue of restructuring Nigeria’s unusual federal system has been a big talking point for the last three decades. However, regional autonomy is a potentially explosive issue in a country that fought a civil war from 1967 to 1970 and sacrificed over 1 million of its citizens to prevent one of its southern regions from seceding, and in which just three of the country’s 36 states today produce 75 percent of the country’s oil and over 50 percent of government revenues. Those revenues, derived from the oil-producing states in the country’s south, are shared between all of Nigeria’s states and the federal government. The oil-producing states currently receive 13 percent of oil revenues derived from their lands, but if they claw back a greater share of those revenues, many states that aren’t oil-producing would be pushed into extreme poverty. Indeed, only eight of Nigeria’s states are thought to be economically viable enough to survive without financial allocations from oil revenue.

 

Atiku’s proposals will delight many younger and southern Nigerians who have campaigned for such measures for three decades, hoping that it will allow Nigeria’s oil-producing states to have a greater say over and share of the profits from the oil drilled from their lands. However the proposals seem radical coming from a northern Muslim such as Atiku, who comes from the part of the country that has traditionally resisted southern-inspired changes to Nigeria’s political order. Historically, many northerners feared that such changes to Nigeria’s constitutional order would reduce the poorer northern states’ share of lucrative revenues from the oil fields in Nigeria’s south. The chairman of the Northern Elders Forum, Ango Abdullahi, claimed that some have “personalized restructuring with a view to targeting a section of the country, and this is the area that we feel very sensitive about, and we will resist it.”

 

Yet the north also has its own reasons to support Atiku’s restructuring ideas. Many complain that Nigeria’s police and soldiers (who are recruited from all over the country under a quota system) are disadvantaged in their fight against the militants of Boko Haram because most of them are not from the northeast where the insurgency emerged, are not familiar with the terrain, and don’t speak the local Kanuri language of the region, thereby making it difficult for them to win the trust of locals and obtain intelligence from them. Some argue that troops should be locals with knowledge of the local language, terrain, and customs.

 

Localization of the security forces has already been occurring slowly, albeit unofficially and without constitutional backing. Nigeria’s Constitution recognizes only those security forces that are established by the federal government and forbids states from creating their own police forces. Yet some states have allowed militia to exist in a legal twilight zone alongside the constitutionally recognized military and police forces.

 

Some of the military’s successes against Boko Haram have been due to the assistance given to them by a militia of local volunteers called the Civilian Joint Task Force. Using their local knowledge, the group has provided vital intelligence to the military, set up security checkpoints, arrested or executed Boko Haram members, and even assisted the military during raids. Twelve states in Nigeria’s north operate under Sharia. Some of these states created enforcement corps known as Hisbah to police their legal code. Several years ago, some southern states also allowed vigilante groups to apprehend armed robbers.

 

Critics pointed out that some of the vigilantes spent as much time eliminating political rivals of their state governor as they did fighting criminals. These local ethno-cultural and religious differences demonstrate the challenges of allowing local communities to create their own security forces. In one part of the country they may be used to fight insurgents, to enforce a theocracy in another, or as political thugs in another. In a country with deep sectarian cleavages such as Nigeria, legislating different legal regimes for these groups would be impossible without accusations of ethnic, geographic, or religious bias. Thanks to Buhari and Atiku’s candor these are no longer academic debates but immediate real-life problems that Nigeria’s next government must confront.

 

If Buhari holds on to power, he will be under pressure to respond to these thorny issues. If Atiku wins, the electorate will expect him to deliver on his campaign promises. Even if neither man intends to touch the restructuring time bomb, the issues they have raised are likely to be picked up by whoever contests the next election.

 

They have unwittingly elevated the restructuring issue to such a high level on the national agenda that they are likely to remain campaign issues even for the next election in 2023, when a younger candidate from the south is almost certain to become president.

 

In Nigeria, younger politicians are far more likely than their conservative elders to implement massive reforms. No matter what Buhari and Atiku do, a southern successor is far more likely than them to push for radical changes to Nigeria’s structure. And that means four years from now Nigeria may have a president with the motivation to not only espouse reforms, but implement them, too.

 

https://twitter.com/maxsiollun

Max Siollun is a Nigerian historian and the author of the books Oil, Politics and Violence: Nigeria’s Military Coup Culture 1966-1976 and Soldiers of Fortune: a History of Nigeria (1983-1993). Follow him on Twitter: @maxsiollun

 

 

#NigeriaDecides – Buhari and Atiku Have Opened Door to Political Forces They Can’t Control or Stop –


This is my latest article in Foreign Policy regarding Nigeria’s upcoming election:

Nigeria Is Headed for Dramatic Changes No Matter Who Wins
The issue of restructuring the country’s delicate federal system has long been a taboo. Both candidates have now put it front and center, ensuring that reforms are on the way.

 

By Max Siollun

 

On Feb. 16, Nigerians will go to the polls for a presidential election. At stake is not only who will be president but also fundamental issues about the structure of the Nigerian state and relations between its constituent units. Who should control the country’s oil resources and security forces? In which areas should the federal and state governments have preeminence over each other? These previously taboo questions have been elevated as key topics on the national political agenda. Regardless of who wins, President Muhammadu Buhari of the ruling All Progressives Congress and his main opposition rival, Atiku Abubakar of the People’s Democratic Party, have opened the door to political forces they cannot control or stop.

 

At first glance Buhari and Atiku (as he is known in Nigeria) appear to be opposites. Buhari is austere, tough on corruption, and lacking in flair. The euphoria that greeted his election victory nearly four years ago has dissipated, and some say his antiquated fiscal approach has contributed to economic stagnation. Last year, former President Olusegun Obasanjo (who remains a vital kingmaker despite leaving power nearly 12 years ago) told Buhari to “dismount from the horse” and retire from politics.

 

Atiku is a gregarious multibillionaire businessman and veteran politician who is seen as business-savvy and has promised economic liberalization, but he has been dogged by corruption allegations. It seems that voters can have a fight against corruption or economic stimulus, but not both. But there is a third and more serious issue bubbling beneath the surface.

 

Similar levels of support for the two main candidates have made the election result too close to call. Since both men are ethnic Fulani Muslims from northern Nigeria, neither can resort to pandering based on ethno-regional or religious sentiment to take votes away from the other, as is frequently the case in Nigerian elections. Due to Nigeria’s gentleman’s agreement to rotate the presidency between the country’s north and south, there is not much southern ferment against the regional origin of the two leading candidates, with the expectation that the south will have its turn in power next time.

 

Yet between the candidates, the pressure to secure a decisive advantage has changed the political narrative and forced both Buhari and Atiku to address uncomfortable existential questions about Nigeria that were delicately circumvented by past governments. For the past 20 years since Nigeria returned to democracy, the country has been stuck with a highly centralized federal structure bequeathed to it by past military governments. This structure gives the federal government huge power over states, control of the country’s oil deposits and security forces, and the power to declare a state of emergency in any state whether or not that state consents. Rather than being reservoirs for local interests, Nigeria’s states are consequently little more than conduits for the implementation of federal government policies.

 

Atiku has described Nigeria’s current political system as “unworkable” and has advocated “devolution of powers and resources to states and local governments” and greater autonomy for states. To combat the insecurity that has led to the military being deployed in at least 32 of Nigeria’s 36 states, he also supports allowing Nigeria’s states to form their own police forces to reinforce Nigeria’s currently federally controlled military and police forces. Buhari is a conservative and has rejected a political restructuring of Nigeria.

 

Such proposals will reverberate at both ends of Nigeria. The issue of restructuring Nigeria’s unusual federal system has been a big talking point for the last three decades. However, regional autonomy is a potentially explosive issue in a country that fought a civil war from 1967 to 1970 and sacrificed over 1 million of its citizens to prevent one of its southern regions from seceding, and in which just three of the country’s 36 states today produce 75 percent of the country’s oil and over 50 percent of government revenues. Those revenues, derived from the oil-producing states in the country’s south, are shared between all of Nigeria’s states and the federal government. The oil-producing states currently receive 13 percent of oil revenues derived from their lands, but if they claw back a greater share of those revenues, many states that aren’t oil-producing would be pushed into extreme poverty. Indeed, only eight of Nigeria’s states are thought to be economically viable enough to survive without financial allocations from oil revenue.

 

Atiku’s proposals will delight many younger and southern Nigerians who have campaigned for such measures for three decades, hoping that it will allow Nigeria’s oil-producing states to have a greater say over and share of the profits from the oil drilled from their lands. However the proposals seem radical coming from a northern Muslim such as Atiku, who comes from the part of the country that has traditionally resisted southern-inspired changes to Nigeria’s political order. Historically, many northerners feared that such changes to Nigeria’s constitutional order would reduce the poorer northern states’ share of lucrative revenues from the oil fields in Nigeria’s south. The chairman of the Northern Elders Forum, Ango Abdullahi, claimed that some have “personalized restructuring with a view to targeting a section of the country, and this is the area that we feel very sensitive about, and we will resist it.”

 

Yet the north also has its own reasons to support Atiku’s restructuring ideas. Many complain that Nigeria’s police and soldiers (who are recruited from all over the country under a quota system) are disadvantaged in their fight against the militants of Boko Haram because most of them are not from the northeast where the insurgency emerged, are not familiar with the terrain, and don’t speak the local Kanuri language of the region, thereby making it difficult for them to win the trust of locals and obtain intelligence from them. Some argue that troops should be locals with knowledge of the local language, terrain, and customs.

 

Localization of the security forces has already been occurring slowly, albeit unofficially and without constitutional backing. Nigeria’s Constitution recognizes only those security forces that are established by the federal government and forbids states from creating their own police forces. Yet some states have allowed militia to exist in a legal twilight zone alongside the constitutionally recognized military and police forces.

 

Some of the military’s successes against Boko Haram have been due to the assistance given to them by a militia of local volunteers called the Civilian Joint Task Force. Using their local knowledge, the group has provided vital intelligence to the military, set up security checkpoints, arrested or executed Boko Haram members, and even assisted the military during raids. Twelve states in Nigeria’s north operate under Sharia. Some of these states created enforcement corps known as Hisbah to police their legal code. Several years ago, some southern states also allowed vigilante groups to apprehend armed robbers.

 

Critics pointed out that some of the vigilantes spent as much time eliminating political rivals of their state governor as they did fighting criminals. These local ethno-cultural and religious differences demonstrate the challenges of allowing local communities to create their own security forces. In one part of the country they may be used to fight insurgents, to enforce a theocracy in another, or as political thugs in another. In a country with deep sectarian cleavages such as Nigeria, legislating different legal regimes for these groups would be impossible without accusations of ethnic, geographic, or religious bias. Thanks to Buhari and Atiku’s candor these are no longer academic debates but immediate real-life problems that Nigeria’s next government must confront.

 

If Buhari holds on to power, he will be under pressure to respond to these thorny issues. If Atiku wins, the electorate will expect him to deliver on his campaign promises. Even if neither man intends to touch the restructuring time bomb, the issues they have raised are likely to be picked up by whoever contests the next election.

 

They have unwittingly elevated the restructuring issue to such a high level on the national agenda that they are likely to remain campaign issues even for the next election in 2023, when a younger candidate from the south is almost certain to become president.

 

In Nigeria, younger politicians are far more likely than their conservative elders to implement massive reforms. No matter what Buhari and Atiku do, a southern successor is far more likely than them to push for radical changes to Nigeria’s structure. And that means four years from now Nigeria may have a president with the motivation to not only espouse reforms, but implement them, too.

 

https://twitter.com/maxsiollun

Max Siollun is a Nigerian historian and the author of the books Oil, Politics and Violence: Nigeria’s Military Coup Culture 1966-1976 and Soldiers of Fortune: a History of Nigeria (1983-1993). Follow him on Twitter: @maxsiollun

 

 

#Nigeria’s 2019 Elections – Everything You Need to Know: #NigeriaDecides2019


nigeria-decides-voting-inec-the-trent-elections-795x510

#Nigeria’s next presidential election is only 5 days away. As usual the political temperature has reached boiling point and everyone thinks the entire future of the entire country is at stake. Rather than focus on one aspect of the election, I have compiled below, a compendium of the major issues surrounding the election.

The Key Contenders

Bloomberg has published a comparison of President Buhari and his main challenger Atiku Abubakar. It presents the election as a binary choice between “A Former Dictator or Alleged Kleptocrat“.

Registered Voters

Voters and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) -@inecnigeria. There are over 84 million registered voters. The distribution of voters s likely to give President Buhari a slight advantage. The north-west (where Buhari hails from) has over 20 million registered voters, and the south-west (where the Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo is from) has over16 million registered voters. In a country like Nigeria where voters often vote on ethno-regional lines, the fact that 42% of registered voters are located in the regions where the president and vice-president are from will be crucial. This article by Idayat Hassan (@hassanidayat) provides a very good summary of the key issues and demographics.

The Role of Women

The UN has published an article lamenting the depressingly low-level of female representation in Nigerian politics. Nigeria has never had en elected female president or state governor. Only 5 of the 73 presidential candidates are women. There are only 7 women in the 109 member Senate, and only 22 of Nigeria’s 360 federal House of Representatives members are women.

The Godfathers

Nigerian elections are not just about those who context for elected office. So called “godfathers” are the unseen hands that sponsor candidates, dictate hands from behind the scenes, and influence the country’s political trajectory. The former Governor of Taraba State Reverend Jolly Nyame, once said: “Whether you like it or not, as a godfather you will not be a governor, you will not be a president, but you can make a governor, you can make a president.”

Further Election Coverage

The BBC’s Africa and Nigeria coverage is usually first class. They have put together a good page on Nigeria’s election here.

Twitter: @maxsiollun

 

 

 

“How Buhari Ran PTF” – #Nigeria #NaijaHistory


Lt-Gen Salihu Ibrahim (Former #Nigerian Chief of Army Staff) Has Died


Salihu with Gowon and Varma

Very sad news. The former Nigerian Chief of Army Staff Lt-General Salihu Ibrahim died yesterday at the age of 73. Ibrahim was a pioneer member of the first regular combatant course of the Nigerian Defence Academy (which graduated in 1967). He finished first in his intake and was awarded the Sword of Honour. The photo above shows Ibrahim (far left) in 1967 with the then Head of State Major-General Yakubu Gowon (center and front).