Nigeria: After three years in power, how is Buhari doing?


After three years in power, the Buharimeter is assessing President Buhari’s performance and popularity on a regular basis through opinion polls. While Buhari already announced his intention to seek re-election in 2019, Nigerians expressed mixed feelings about his political performance. Buhari’s promise to fight corruption, insecurity and unemployment remains a “work in progress” at best or a “broken promise” for those who are disappointed with Buhari’s results. A recent Buharimeter poll indicates that 54% of Nigerians think that the public declaration of President Muhammadu Buhari's assets and liabilities fell short of standard practice. Moreover, no ministers publicly declared their assets and liabilities upon assuming office in September 2015. While Nigerians generally support Buhari’s fight against corruption, the vast majority is unaware of the measures introduced to carry out this promise. Given the depth of this challenge, fighting corruption remains of paramount importance for the country. Moreover, Nigeria’s security situation remains extremely precarious. While the Buhari administration made significant gains against the Boko Haram insurgency, violent clashes between herders and farmers and the rise of tribal tensions are clearly compromising the country’s security record. As for his promise to increase employment, the ministry of labour indicates that 5-7 million jobs have been created in the food economy. However, the unemployment rate, estimated at 18.8% in 2017, has risen over consecutive years since 2014. The absolute number of unemployed people increased to an estimated 15.9 million people, while the underemployed were at about 18 million (21.2%). Combined, 40% of the country’s labour force is either underemployed or jobless.


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