Nigeria’s 2015 general elections were the most contentious and most successful in the nation’s history. New voting technology, careful planning and a popular desire for change were pitted against money politics, incumbent chicanery, and an ongoing insurgency in the north of the country. Poised between new beginnings and political chaos, the elections were a litmus test for Nigeria’s democracy.
In this lecture, the man at the helm of the electoral process tells the inside story of Nigeria’s first successful transfer of power, and draws lessons for democratic transitions in other African countries.
About the speaker:
Professor Attahiru Jega is the erstwhile Chair of Nigeria’s Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), having been replaced by Amina Bala Zakari in July. He is a professor of Political Science and former Vice Chancellor of Bayero University, Kano, and has authored and edited a number of books on democratization in Nigeria. He also negotiated a landmark agreement for Nigerian academics as President of the Academic Staff Union of Universities during the early 1990s
Professor Jega was also nominated winner of the 2015 Charles T. Manatt Democracy award by the International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES) in July. He will collect the award in September.