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Prime Witness: Change and Policy Challenges in Buhari’s Nigeria

Author: Oseloka Obaze
SKU: 43


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This volume of essays on public policy challenges in the Buhari-led Nigeria is a child of necessity.  In 2015 and sixteen years after the PDP assumed the leadership reins in Nigeria, it was evident to all, that Nigeria was not enjoying the best form of governance and purposeful leadership. The strength of government was absolutely lacking. Enter 2015 and the grand alliance and vision of the All Progressives Congress (APC), which claimed to be the only credible alternative capable of upending the PDP and providing Nigeria the much leadership change it desired. Hope about Nigeria’s prospects soared with the election of President Muhammadu Buhari. The hope was well founded: it reflected the high expectations generated both by the smooth transfer of power from the Jonathan administration, itself a sign of a maturing democracy, and by the scintillating campaign by candidate Buhari. It did not take long before the Buhari administration confronted the political reality of governance. The governance reality that the Buhari administration faced on assuming the reins of power consisted of his own campaign promises (tackling insecurity, combating corruption, and growing the economy — with emphasis on reducing unemployment and diversifying the economy); unanticipated crises (resurgence of militancy in the Niger Delta and onset of recession); and self-inflicted injuries (delayed appointment of his cabinet, policy somersaults on foreign exchange policy, and poor management of the recession). Prime Witness Change and Policy Challenges in Buhari’s Nigeria is essentially a product of the author’s observations, exchanges with his various interlocutors in and out of government, and Nigerians and non-Nigerians alike, during the first year of the Buhari administration, 2015-2016. The decision to put this volume together, and indeed, the compelling reason for articulating the policy recommendations, critiques and views herein, derived in his personal belief that as a member of the Nigerian attentive public, we owed it as a civic duty to our posterity to speak up, regardless of whether anyone is listening. Such undertaking will no doubt, enrich our national conversation of critical issues and in the long run, vindicate us in the eyes of our posterity.

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