Buharinomics: From Economic Recession to Citizens’ Depression and Finally, Capital Flight.

Adebayo Adeniran
7 min readFeb 7, 2021

From two recessions in four years to the mass slaughter of its citizens during the end Sars protests, in October 2020. The Nigerian President is widely seen as catastrophic failure, quite possibly the worst ever, in the country’s troubled post independence history. where did it all go wrong for the erstwhile military dictator turned civilian leader?

When the national elections in 2015 were postponed by six weeks from the 14th of February to the 28th of March, political pundits and naysayers saw this as a sign of panic, that the gods of change were about to strike the polity. The Incumbent, Goodluck Ebele Jonathan on a visit to a southern power plant, two weeks prior to the election, had spoken of a great fatigue to the Chief Executive Officer and a general lack of motivation to fight the re-election campaign.

By the time the results began pouring in on the 30th and 31st of March 2015, it was clear that a political earthquake of seismic proportions had taken place. The Nigerian voters, completely exasperated by the inertia of the Jonathan administration, in its failure to account for $50 billion, later reduced to $20 billion, in remitted funds to the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, saw its Petroleum minister- Alison Madueke-Diezani as a lightening rod for its problems and were determined to make the ruling party (PDP) pay heavily at the polls.

It is against this backdrop that General Muhammadu Buhari, a man who had run the country, as military leader, for twenty months in January 1984 to the 27th of August 1985, when he was deposed in a coup by the then number 3 man (Ibrahim Babangida)of the Supreme Military Council, came into sharp focus. By the 31st of March,2015, at the fourth time of asking, the one ambition, he had, it seemed, had come to fruition. He was to become the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, with the might,perquisites and appurtenances of the office.

When he was inaugurated two months later on the 29th of May 2015, to great fanfare, President Muhammadu Buhari, relocated the Nigerian army to Bornu state to fight the terrorist group boko haram. It was at this point that alarm bells should have begun ringing- civil servants were appointed to run the government departments, while the new head of government was working out who would run which government department. In another part of Lagos, months later, police vehicles had gathered…

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Adebayo Adeniran

A lifelong bibliophile, who seeks to unleash his energy on as many subjects as possible