On, March 31st , an unprecedented feat occurred amid all the chaos that the populace of Nigeria was undergoing. It was the very first time, that an opposing party had defeated the current incumbent party in the democratic elections. The candidate who took four tries to win the presidency was a man named Muhammadu Buhari. Nigeria also held one of the most tumultuous campaign seasons, for this particular one had been extended by six weeks. This was mainly due to personal attacks as well as cross-party discrepancies. However, the result ended with Buhari winning by about 2.1 million more votes than his adversary Goodluck Jonathan.
Though the tight vote had sparked bitter dissonance between the two candidates and their supporters, the ultimate message that they both wanted to send to their hopeful citizens was to accept the outcomes of this fateful election. Goodluck Johnathan even said after the loss,”Nobody’s ambition is worth the blood of any Nigerian.”
Even though Buhari had evidently won the election, it was done through a great expense.This was something that was a pivotal phase in his career, and inflicted great wounds in terms of corruption , and his people. In 1985, Buhari was the military head of his northern state, and was overthrown in a violent coup that was lead by General Ibrahim Babangida, as well as a host of members of the Supreme Military Council (SMC). His detention lasted until 1988 in Benin city.
As a rejuvenated democrat, he pursued the presidency continuously in every election starting from 2003. This 72 year old man was, and still is campaigning to establish zero tolerance policies for corruption, and plans to decimate a supposedly volatile group of Boko Haram Islamists. This eminent group in the northern regions of Nigeria had killed and kidnapped thousands of citizens.
A clear-cut advantage that Buhari holds is that he has tremendous military experiences. Hence, he can fight the renegades of civil society. However, to confront the stagnant economic growth he said will be a much more strenuous task at hand. The plummeting oil prices,stimulated such growth , as well as the record lows that the Naira (Nigerian currency) had slumped to. The more impregnable problem that is most likely approaching, is the desire for the countries share of wealth in oil. Nevertheless, there is still a resolute belief in the nation’s democracy, as well as political maturity, which Buhari had evidenced in his victory speech on April 1st.
Mohammadu Buhari has undeniable faith in his people, and sees glory in every possibility despite his challenge of managing expectations. Nigeria is a country that is stricken with shock and overwhelming hope that a new leader has finally emerged to solve the conceivable issues facing this country’s pastors.