Africa in Transition

John Campbell and Michelle Gavin track political and security developments across sub-Saharan Africa.

Latest Post

A view shows a road blockade at the Lekki toll gate, as Nigeria's Lagos State eases a round-the-clock curfew imposed in response to protests against alleged police brutality, after days of unrest, in Lagos, Nigeria on October 24, 2020. Afolabi Sotunde/Reuters

Will the Lekki Toll Gate Atrocity Change Nigeria?

"Dr. Richard A. Joseph, professor emeritus at Northwestern University and previously of the University of Ibadan in Nigeria, is a life member of the Council on Foreign Relations. His 1987 book Democracy and Prebendal Politics in Nigeria: The Rise and Fall of the Second Republic has done much to shape academic analysis of Nigeria and, in this op-ed, he places Nigeria's current protest movement within a broader historical and comparative context. I owe an intellectual debt to Dr. Read More

Nigeria: Fear of Repression
Western media is reporting that violence in Lagos—initially connected to protests against the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), a police unit—is intensifying. Lagos is under a twenty-four-hour curfe…
Magufuli is Transforming Tanzania's Ruling Party From a “Benign Hegemon” Into a Malevolent One
Nolan Quinn is a research associate for the Council on Foreign Relations’ Africa Program. Prior to working for the Council, he lived in Tanzania, returning in March 2020. Tanzania’s Chama cha Mapi…
Protests, Chaos in Nigeria
Protests that initially called for the disbandment of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), an elite police unit credibly accused of rampant human rights abuses, now seem less focused—but are accele…
  • Sudan
    Removing Sudan from the State Sponsors of Terrorism List
    This week, President Trump made the long-anticipated announcement that the United States is prepared to remove Sudan from the list of State Sponsors of Terrorism (SST). Sudan has been on the list of …
  • Nigeria
    Nigeria Security Tracker Weekly Update: October 10-16
    Below is a visualization and description of some of the most significant incidents of political violence in Nigeria from October 10 to October 16, 2020. This update also represents violence related t…
  • Nigeria
    Nigerian Demonstrations Becoming About More Than the Police
    Following nationwide demonstrations—first against the elite Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) and then the Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) unit, its successor—the Buhari administration has abolish…
  • Nigeria
    Nigerians Cry Out Against Police Brutality
    Nkasi Wodu is a lawyer, peacebuilding practitioner, and development expert based in Port Harcourt, Nigeria. In 2017, Nigerian youths adopted a campaign against brutality from the Nigeria Police Fo…
  • Sub-Saharan Africa
    The Changing Style of African Coups
    Something of a democratic recessional is underway in sub-Sahara, with a weakening of civil society and democratic institutions. This both reflects and facilitates assaults on civilian, secular govern…
  • West Africa
    Anti-Police Demonstrations in Nigeria
    There is little sense of national cohesion in Nigeria, and protests tend to be along ethnic and religious lines rather than national. Like the 2012 demonstrations against the Goodluck Jonathan admini…
  • International Organizations
    Nigerian (and American) Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala Finalist for WTO Director General
    The two finalists for the position of director general of the World Trade Organization (WTO) are Yoo Myung-hee, Republic of Korea, and Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, a Nigerian and (since 2019) an American cit…