Africa News blog

African business, politics and lifestyle

What can Nigeria expect now?

February 24, 2010

Ambulance.jpgThe return of Nigerian President Umaru Yar’Adua three months after he left for a Saudi hospital might normally have beeen seen as a sign that a long spell of debilitating uncertainty was over.

But this was no ordinary return for a long absent president with an army band and a red carpet.

Yar’Adua was moved under cover of darkness from a plane to an ambulance and then driven to the Aso Rock presidential villa in Abuja. No pictures. No comment.

In fact, nobody outside his immediate circle has had a chance to see him and that apparently includes Vice President Goodluck Jonathan, who two weeks ago assumed executive powers with the support of parliament to end a power vacuum.

A statement from Yar’Adua’s spokesman thanked Jonathan for his help and said he would continue running affairs of state while the president convalesces. Before seeing the president, he was due to meet his wife, Turai.

Yar’Adua’s return was welcomed by many in the country of more than 140 million although there were widespread doubts  about whether he would return to office and questions over what would be the role of his aides and powerful wife.

What will the new arrangement mean for chances of addressing problems such as unrest in the Niger Delta, power shortages, ensuring fair elections and corruption? What will it mean for the political intrigues ahead of an election due within just over a year?


Turai is nobody in the Nigerian political system. Her continued interference in the polity of the country is testament to the fact that Yar’Adua’s aides are incompetent and a shame to our great nation. why should VP, Goodluck meet with her? is she a member of the FEC? What is her constitutional role in the government of Yar’Adua? Nothing, nothing i tell you. My VP should wise up and do the right thing and let me see them try to impeach him. Bunch of idiots!!

Posted by acapiafrica | Report as abusive

there is fire on the mountain, run! run! run!.the nothren oligarcs are hell bent in destroying our polity,they want to take control of the presidency at all cost even to the detriment of our ailing president.the coming days and weeks will be a pointer to my arguement.i think if yaradua is sane and in full control of his faculties, he would leave a sleeping dog lie.get well mr president first and dont let the hawks around you drive you to an early grave.

Posted by moskimo | Report as abusive

It has become quite surreal. Most Reports confirm a President who is totally incapacitated and hence Your Paragraph

A statement from Yar’Adua’s spokesman thanked Jonathan for his help and said he would continue running affairs of state while the president convalesces. Before seeing the president, he was due to meet his wife, Turai.

confirms where a Centre of Power exists and clearly is muscular enough to eke out this Impasse. Given the longevity of the Stand Off, one has to believe Turai is a worthy Opponent.

Having coming this Far, we might well go further and things could take a quite bizarre turn.

Aly-Khan Satchu

Posted by AlyKhanSatchu | Report as abusive

Our President has all along been terminally sick and he is not to blame for what has transpired within these past three monthes.This nocturnal smuggling of the President into the country unheralded is the anticlimax of series of melodramas that have befuddled the nation for too long.In a normal country with a rule of law the actors would have merited stiff penalties.But here is Nigeria a failed state.

Posted by dobiahu | Report as abusive

Why shouldn’t Turai be power drunk, when we so much adore the office of the First Lady. Otherwise what has the wife of a nation’s president got to do with our presidency. Any woman that aspires to become the president of a country should face the huddles of electioneering and not passing through the back door. Our Governors, Ministers, NASS members worship our first ladies. Today, all these terrible things we do ignorantly have backfired on the polity. May God help Nigeria

Posted by echefula | Report as abusive

I just wonder the role of Turai in the Nigeria polity.She holds no political appointment or office and yet command such power.It is a big shame to Nigeria’s democracy – an expression of incompetetence on the part of Senators, Legislators and ministers.They should understand where to draw the divide and effectively utilize the constitution to address this shameful issue.

Posted by coolchuks | Report as abusive

NIgeria is not fit to be one country and every body in Nigeria knows that.there is no amount of pacthed relationship that will soothe the feelings,so many thing has gone wrong.

Posted by ifydechu | Report as abusive

Sorry but I have to disagree with all those numb skulls that accept that this first lady should have a say in the countries policies. No way! Nigeria is not a Kitchen. And it is true the country is split along ethnic and religious lines. But the power must remain where the wealth comes from if you ask me. Them Northerners have used our oil money to furnish their larger than life ways. Goodluck bring the goods back home. Infact Port Harcourt should be the capital or else Niger/Delta would secede!!!

Posted by DzaDie | Report as abusive

I am not Nigeria, but its my other home. Question: who is Turai and what is her role in the political governing of Nigeria? And when did she get a role?

Posted by Njeri | Report as abusive

Power-drunk people…

Posted by gabrielo | Report as abusive

No one vote for Turai, is some northerner just using her or maybe she wan to become african 1st female president which will never possible in Nigeria, as for yaradua, his coming to Nigeria is nothing, Saudi just prevent their head, no word, no comment, no pictures, maybe he is already dead who knows when no one have access to him, why will they shut down airport light, why will they use ambulance to take him off, let reason, the man is dead or reach 95% dead zone, I hope goodluck shoupd petform, edicate poverty, solve Niger-Delta problem, reconstruction of federal roads, electricity, and state of art facility in medical, engineering, manufacuting, and agric sectors

Posted by Jossytecg | Report as abusive


Posted by CHANGENIGERIA | Report as abusive

This confirms our belief that all investors interested in Africa should subscribe to our analysis.

B&M Consulting is the first political risk consultancy focused exclusively on Africa.

Posted by africarisk | Report as abusive

Nigeria can have only one President at time. For now, that President is His Excellency Umaru Yar’Adua. Anything else is wishful thinking and destabilizing to the Federal Republic of Nigeria….

Keep your expectations at bay until God stops his biological clock or whenever so that he handsover to the next elected government….

Posted by Entrepreneur | Report as abusive

Dam its time 4 change…… change….. change. Dont yall understand change????

Posted by delolo | Report as abusive

crap statement by the speaker on march 19th, the person must be daft and myopic. In the uncertainty that surrounds the 6th world largest oil wealth it is really shameful that 67.4% of the population is living below $1 a day,this is because of the crude and greedy approach used in politics and governance. Yar ‘Adua is incapacitated and even when he was ok he was almost next to useless, no common sense, no innovation , it is sad, the nation is hanging on the last life line and some is still saying the sick president should still govern , I feel this person is sick as well and not in touch with reality. Nigeria will keep crawling forever if things continues like this . Please go to Asia and see what they are up too. It is really sad sometimes I wish Nigeria never had the oil because it sounds like a stigma and jinx because we can’t think of something else but oil. It is a real is really a sad story.

Posted by yommie | Report as abusive

Post Your Comment

We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see