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Nigeria swears in a new president facing profound economic and security pressures

In this photo released by the Nigeria State House, Nigeria's new President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, left, receives Nigeria flags from former Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari, during the inauguration ceremony in Abuja, Monday, May 29, 2023.
Sunday Aghaeze
/
AP
In this photo released by the Nigeria State House, Nigeria's new President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, left, receives Nigeria flags from former Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari, during the inauguration ceremony in Abuja, Monday, May 29, 2023.

LAGOS, Nigeria - Bola Tinubu has been sworn in as Nigeria's president, at a ceremony in the capital Abuja. The 71-year-old comes to power following a disputed election and under pressure to quickly improve the economy and security in Africa's most populous country.

Tinubu took his oath of office on Monday, inheriting a country with profound challenges. Unemployment has soared, and financial insecurity has spread across Africa's largest economy under outgoing President Muhammadu Buhari.

Tinubu, a wealthy, powerful and divisive figure in Nigerian politics, has promised to turn things around. He's vowed to boost diminished oil revenues and attract investment. Seventy percent of Nigeria's 200 million people are under 30, and for many, their prospects have dimmed in the last decade.

He will also be hoping to reverse the flow of generations of Nigerians who are leaving the countryin record numbers, in search of a better life abroad.

But he takes over under the cloud of a disputed election victory. The polls were marred by logistical failures and incidents of violence, and the result is being challenged in court with a verdict expected later this year.

Copyright 2023 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Emmanuel Akinwotu
Emmanuel Akinwotu is an international correspondent for NPR. He joined NPR in 2022 from The Guardian, where he was West Africa correspondent.