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Contemporary Nigerian Politics

Competition in a Time of Transition and Terror

A. Carl LeVan (American University, Washington DC)

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Cambridge University Press
17 January 2019
Elections & referenda; Political structures: democracy; Political structures: totalitarianism & dictatorship; Public opinion & polls; Political subversion
In 2015, Nigeria's voters cast out the ruling People's Democratic Party (PDP). Here, A. Carl LeVan traces the political vulnerability of Africa's largest party in the face of elite bargains that facilitated a democratic transition in 1999. These 'pacts' enabled electoral competition but ultimately undermined the party's coherence. LeVan also crucially examines the four critical barriers to Nigeria's democratic consolidation: the terrorism of Boko Haram in the northeast, threats of Igbo secession in the southeast, lingering ethnic resentments and rebellions in the Niger Delta, and farmer-pastoralist conflicts. While the PDP unsuccessfully stoked fears about the opposition's ability to stop Boko Haram's terrorism, the opposition built a winning electoral coalition on economic growth, anti-corruption, and electoral integrity. Drawing on extensive interviews with a number of politicians and generals and civilians and voters, he argues that electoral accountability is essential but insufficient for resolving the representational, distributional, and cultural components of these challenges.
By:   A. Carl LeVan (American University Washington DC)
Imprint:   Cambridge University Press
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 228mm,  Width: 151mm,  Spine: 15mm
Weight:   430g
ISBN:   9781108459747
ISBN 10:   1108459749
Pages:   300
Publication Date:   17 January 2019
Audience:   College/higher education ,  Professional and scholarly ,  Primary ,  Undergraduate
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

A. Carl LeVan is Associate Professor at the American University in Washington, DC. His is the author of Dictators and Democracy in African Development: The Political Economy of Good Governance in Nigeria (Cambridge, 2015), co-editor of The Oxford Handbook of Nigerian Politics (2018), as well as various articles on Boko Haram, civil society, Abuja's development, and authoritarianism. He also worked as a technical trainer for Nigeria's National Assembly during the 1999 transition. LeVan's other publications include the co-authored Constituents before Assembly (Cambridge, 2017), which demonstrates the benefits of participatory constitution-making worldwide. He has published articles on power-sharing, constitution-making, African cabinet size, and the US military in Africa.

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