Nigeria Speaks: Poll Shows Confidence in Democracy, Governance

On Thursday, July 14, the Atlantic Council’s Africa Center, in cooperation with the International Republican Institute (IRI), hosted a discussion on the findings of a recent IRI poll on the state of democracy and governance in Nigeria.

After an introduction by Africa Center Deputy Director Bronwyn Bruton, international polling consultant Robert Carpenter gave an overview of the survey’s findings.

The poll was released last month in Abuja, Nigeria, and included results from nearly 8,000 interviews in five languages. More than half of respondents felt that the country is “moving in the right direction,” and nearly half of respondents felt democracy had improved since Nigeria’s landmark 2015 presidential elections.

Sentell Barnes, IRI’s Nigeria country director, noted some of the poll’s discrepancies by region, gender, and income level. He suggested that despite a number of financial and security obstacles, Nigerians are, on average, optimistic about the future of their country. IRI’s Africa Regional Director John Tomaszewski detailed how the survey will influence IRI’s work throughout Nigeria.

Bruton moderated the ensuing discussion, which focused on IRI’s plans for future, including expanded polling and its work with Nigeria’s political parties.

For more on the event, see “Nigeria’s Optimists.”

Image: From left to right, IRI's international polling consultant Robert Carpenter and IRI's Nigeria country director Sentell Barnes discuss their poll's findings.