The election of the opposition candidate in Nigeria is a positive signal regarding prospects for democracy in Africa’s most populace nation. The election of a retired army general with a predisposition to action promises to contrast sharply with the sometimes bizarre passivity of the current Nigerian president. The election of a Muslim in a nation closely divided between Christians and Muslims, plagued by Salafist violence, opens important opportunities for the entire region.
It is significant — and encouraging — that Buhari won in several states with a Christian majority. (See map)
Less positive assessments could be offered of equal credence. But as our friend Hegel has argued, “These do not contradict one another, one is as necessary as the other; and constitutes the life of the whole.”
Given the place of Africa in previous and prospective terrorist threats to the United States, the follow-on to this election is likely to have significant homeland security implications.