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November 21, 2019

Nigeria
Abacha, Abiola, and Nigeria’s 1999 Transition to Civilian Rule

The 1999 transition of Nigeria from military to civilian, democratic government, is a defining moment in Nigerian history, representing the beginning of the longest, uninterrupted government since independence in 1960. But what exactly transpired during the period of transition, which began in earnest with the death of military dictator Sani Abacha in1998, is not entirely clear. Max Siollun, in a fascinating study of the period, Nigeria’s Soldiers of Fortune, has done us a service by illuminating some of the behind-the-scenes machinations of that period, and putting to bed some of the rumors that passed for history.

A supporter of Chief Mashood Abiola holds up a newpaper during a demonstration outside the family home July 10 to protest about the suspicious nature of his death.

November 20, 2019

Guinea
Guinea Confronts Third Termism

The small West African country of Guinea has become the latest in sub-Saharan Africa threatened by third termism. President Alpha Condé’s second term ends in 2020, and the current constitution prevents him from seeking a third. So, last month, the eighty-one-year-old set to work drafting a new constitution, one that could allow him to remain in office indefinitely. 

Guinea's President Alpha Conde attends the opening of the 54th Ordinary Session of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government, in Abuja, Nigeria December 22, 2018.

November 18, 2019

Nigeria
Nigeria Security Tracker Weekly Update: November 9–15

This update represents violence in Nigeria and related to Boko Haram in Cameroon, Chad, and Niger from November 9 to 15, 2019.

Map of Nigeria shaded to reflect NST-documented deaths per state.

November 15, 2019

Tanzania
Tanzania, Where Magufuli Is Waging a War on Democracy

During the four year tenure of President Magufuli, the country has move toward full-on authoritarianism. On November 7, a Magistrates Court in Tanzania postponed for the seventh time the case of journalist Erick Kabendera, who has voiced criticism of the country’s president, John Pombe Magufuli. After initially being violently abducted from his home and later investigated over his citizenship status, Mr. Kabendera is now facing a host of economic charges, including “assisting an organized crime racket” and money laundering. 

Tanzanian investigative journalist Erick Kabendera arrives, flanked by security, at the Kisutu Residents Magistrate Court

November 14, 2019

Mali
Foreign Troops Fighting Jihadists in the Sahel Face Criticism as Terror Grows

In response to the proliferation of ostensibly jihadist groups in the Sahel, governments have deployed more than 20,000 international and local troops, comprising 4,500 French soldieries, 13,000 UN peacekeepers, and about 5,000 troops connected to the G5 Sahel—an initiative godfathered by France and including Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania, and Niger. But terror groups have endured and grown more deadly.  

A French soldier kneels with his weapon while a camel stands in the background in a semi-arid landscape.

November 13, 2019

Nigeria
Nigerian Police Use Live Ammunition Against Peaceful Demonstrators

Nigerian media is reporting that on November 12, the Nigerian police fired live bullets to disperse those protesting the continued imprisonment of Nigerian journalist Omeyele Sowore. The media descri…

Protestors facing police hold signs that read "DSS Obey The Court," and other things.

November 12, 2019

Nigeria
Nigeria Security Tracker Weekly Update: November 2–8

This update represents violence in Nigeria and related to Boko Haram in Cameroon, Chad, and Niger from November 2 to 8, 2019.

Map of Nigeria shaded to reflect NST-documented deaths per state.

November 10, 2019

United States
Happy 244th Birthday to the United States Marine Corps!

The U.S. Marine Corps turns 244 years-old today. On November 10, 1775, the Continental Congress adopted a resolution to create a Marine force composed of two battalions. Since then, the Marines have …

U.S. Marine Corps

November 8, 2019

Nigeria
Middle Class Nigerians Struggle to Afford Housing in Lagos

Housing for professionals working in the modern economy are challenged in most of the world’s mega-cities. Lagos is no exception, as profiled by the BBC. Its reporter estimates that “middle-to-high-income” housing can cost between $5,000 and $40,000 a year. But the practice of paying a year’s worth of rent upfront sets Lagos apart: the BBC’s reporter was asked for between $11,000 and $22,000 for a two-bedroom apartment with electricity in a good Lagos neighborhood, Victoria Island.

Yachts seen docked at the marina in front of housing complex building

November 7, 2019

Nigeria
The Oscars Disqualify Nigeria’s Film Submission Over Language

The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences has disqualified from competition in the International Feature Film category the Nigerian film “Lionheart” because most of the dialogue is in English. English is the only official language of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. So, “Lion Heart” is incontestably a foreign made film in Nigeria’s only national language.

Genevieve Nnaji, a Nigerian actress, poses in a red suit at the Toronto Film Festival.