Nigeria's Critical Election: 2011

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John A. Ayoade, Adeoye A. Akinsanya
Lexington Books, Nov 29, 2012 - Political Science - 348 pages
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Elections have been central to regime collapse in Nigeria because they neither passed the test of citizens’ acceptability nor electoral neutrality. They always pushed the country to a dangerous brink which she has often survived after serious constitutional and political bruises. The general election of 1964 rocked the delicate balance of the country resulting in the military coup of January 15, 1966 and a thirty month civil war. The subsequent effort of the military at restructuring the country did not go far enough to win the civic confidence of the people. The military availed itself of another opportunity of tinkering with the system in 1993. However, it demonstrated that it was not immune to civic dishonesty when it annulled the widely acclaimed free and fair presidential election in June 12, 1993. By fits and starts, Nigeria held another election in 1999 which was tolerated only because of citizens’ fatigue of military rule. The elections of 2003 and 2007 were classic examples of make-belief democracy. The feeding of inequity and, if you will, domination, persisted. A combination of fortune, trickery and arm twisting produced a power shift in favour of Dr. Goodluck Ebele Azikwe Jonathan in April 2011. The subsequent attempt by the north to create a strategic consensus did not save it from being pushed into fringe politics forcing some of its spokespersons to vow that they will make governance impossible. The election was better than the worst but much still remains to be done.


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About the author (2012)

John Adebunmi Ayoade, until his retirement in 2008, was a Professor of Political Science at the University of Ibadan, Nigeria. He holds a B.A. (Honours) Degree and PhD of the same University. He taught Nigerians Politics, among other courses, at the University of Ibadan and the University of Pennsylvania. He was also a Visiting Lecturer at Williams College, Massachusetts, Adjunct Faculty, Villanova University, and Senior African Fulbright Scholar, African Studies Centre, Boston University. He is a Member of the prestigious National Institute for Policy ad Strategic Studies, Kuru, Nigeria. Professor Ayoade who served on the 2005 Nigeria National Political Reform Conference was at various times Chair of the Department and later Dean of the Faculty of the Social Sciences. He was President of the Nigerian Political Science Association.

Adeoye A. Akinsanya, a Professor of Political Science at the Nasarawa State University, Keffi, Nasarawa State, Nigeria holds a B.Sc Political Science, Summa Cum Laude of the University of Ibadan, Ibadan: M.A. and Ph.D Political Science of the University of Chicago and an MPA of The University of Pittsburgh. Professor Akinsanya who taught at the Universities of Lagos, South Carolina, Ilorin, Calabar and Uyo as well as the Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ago-Iwoye, Ogun State and the Nigerian Defence Academy, Kaduna. A recipient of the Ford Foundation Fellowship, Commonwealth University Academic Staff Fellowship, University of Ibadan Post-Graduate Scholarship, University of Pittsburgh Pre-Doctoral Fellowship, World Society Foundation Fellowship, Visiting Research Fellowship at the Institute for Developing Economics, Tokyo and Senior African Fulbright Fellowship at the SAIS, The John Hopkins University, Washington DC. Professor Akinsanya has published widely in the fields of Political Economy, Public International Law, African Politics and Administrative Law.

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