John Campbell

Africa in Transition

Campbell tracks political and security developments across sub-Saharan Africa.

An Update on African Immigration to the United States

by John Campbell Friday, April 10, 2015
A U.S. flag hangs in the grand hall of the Ellis Island immigration museum building in New York October 28, 2013. (Lucas Jackson/Courtesy Reuters) A U.S. flag hangs in the grand hall of the Ellis Island immigration museum building in New York October 28, 2013. (Lucas Jackson/Courtesy Reuters)

I have written before about African immigration to the United States and the presence of African immigrants in New York City, a new demographic trend. On April 9, the Pew Research Center issued a new report, “A Rising Share of the U.S. Black Population is Foreign Born,” which updates and adds precision to the conversation about this important topic. The conclusion from Pew is that black immigrants are doing well and making a significant contribution to American society. Read more »

South African Comedian in the United States

by Guest Blogger for John Campbell Thursday, April 9, 2015
Comedian Jon Stewart greets the audience as he tapes Comedy Central's "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart" at the University of Denver in Denver, August 26, 2008. (Eric Thayer/Courtesy Reuters) Comedian Jon Stewart greets the audience as he tapes Comedy Central's "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart" at the University of Denver in Denver, August 26, 2008. (Eric Thayer/Courtesy Reuters)

This is a guest post by Allen Grane, research associate for the Council on Foreign Relations Africa Studies program.

On March 30, Comedy Central’s the Daily Show announced that 31-year old Trevor Noah will replace John Stewart as the host. As the Daily Show’s twitter handle put it: Noah is just “another guy in late night from Soweto.” The announcement of his new position has drawn a great deal of attention, both positive and negative. Read more »

Coming Clean: Was Justice Served in the Ivory Coast Trial of Simone Gbagbo?

by Guest Blogger for John Campbell Wednesday, April 8, 2015
Ivory Coast President Laurent Gbagbo and his wife Simone Ehivet Gbagbo attend a memorial ceremony at Felix Houphouet Boigny stadium in Abidjan April 1, 2009. (Luc Gnago/Courtesy Reuters) Ivory Coast President Laurent Gbagbo and his wife Simone Ehivet Gbagbo attend a memorial ceremony at Felix Houphouet Boigny stadium in Abidjan April 1, 2009. (Luc Gnago/Courtesy Reuters)

This is a guest post by Cheryl Strauss Einhorn, a journalist and adjunct professor at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.

Ivorian politics are colorful. Yet it may still surprise some that a court in the Ivory Coast sentenced former First Lady Simone Gbagbo to twenty years in prison for her role in the 2011 post-election violence even though prosecutors only requested ten years. The court convicted her of undermining state security, while the prosecution only charged her for disturbing public order. Read more »

Boko Haram Still An Imminent Threat

by John Campbell Tuesday, April 7, 2015
Police officers assist in getting a vehicle away from a burning car at the scene of a bomb explosion in Gombe, February 2, 2015. (Afolabi Sotunde/Courtesy Reuters) Police officers assist in getting a vehicle away from a burning car at the scene of a bomb explosion in Gombe, February 2, 2015. (Afolabi Sotunde/Courtesy Reuters)

In the wake of Nigeria’s presidential elections, horror over the massacre at Garissa in Kenya, and a general western focus on a possible Iran nuclear deal, it is easy to leave Boko Haram to one side. Some may see the election of Muhammadu Buhari as somehow “solving” Boko Haram. This misplaced inattention is reinforced by the clearance of Boko Haram militants from towns in northeast Nigeria by the Chadian, Nigerien, and Nigerian militaries fighting alongside South African and other mercenaries. Read more »

Nigeria Security Tracker: Weekly Update March 28-April 3

by John Campbell Monday, April 6, 2015
The map above depicts deaths in Nigeria by state. (Source: CFR Nigeria Security Tracker; powered by Tableau) The map above depicts deaths in Nigeria by state. (Source: CFR Nigeria Security Tracker; powered by Tableau)

Below is a visualization and description of some of the most significant incidents of political violence in Nigeria from March 28, 2015 to April 3, 2015. This update also represents violence related to Boko Haram in Cameroon, Chad, and Niger. These incidents will be included in the Nigeria Security Tracker.
Read more »

“Hard for Nigeria’s President Goodluck Jonathan Not To Run in 2015—But Can he Win?”

by John Campbell Friday, April 3, 2015
Two men cast their ballots in a poling station in Kano, March 28, 2015. (Goran Tomasevic/Courtesy Reuters) Two men cast their ballots in a poling station in Kano, March 28, 2015. (Goran Tomasevic/Courtesy Reuters)

That was the title of my December 20, 2013 post. It appeared in the aftermath of former president Olusegun Obasanjo’s highly critical letter to Jonathan cataloging the latter’s political failures, the publicizing of Central Bank Governor Lamido Sanusi’s accusation that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation had failed to remit billions of dollars to the federal treasury, and the defecting of many legislators from Jonathan’s Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to the opposition All Progressives Congress (APC). Boko Haram attacks in the northeast were also escalating. Read more »

Nigeria President-elect Mohammadu Buhari’s Agenda

by John Campbell Thursday, April 2, 2015
All Progressives Congress presidential candidate and Nigeria's former military ruler Muhammodu Buhari leaves after a verification of his voter's card at a polling unit at the begining of general elections in Daura, March 28, 2015. (Akintunde Akinleye/Courtesy Reuters) All Progressives Congress presidential candidate and Nigeria's former military ruler Muhammodu Buhari leaves after a verification of his voter's card at a polling unit at the begining of general elections in Daura, March 28, 2015. (Akintunde Akinleye/Courtesy Reuters)

As in the United States, there is a hiatus between a president’s election and his inauguration in Nigeria. Muhammadu Buhari will be inaugurated as president of Nigeria on May 29. In the meantime, President Jonathan remains in charge, but with little prestige and insufficient credibility to take the initiative in the aftermath of his election defeat. There will be gubernatorial and local elections on April 18; rivalries are often intense at that level, and there could be considerable bloodshed. Read more »

Muhammadu Buhari’s Presidential Victory in Nigeria

by John Campbell Wednesday, April 1, 2015
Opposition presidential candidate Muhammadu Buhari of the All Progressives Congress (APC), speaks during the Nigeria Labour Congress in Abuja, February 9, 2015. (Afolabi Sotunde/Courtesy Reuters) Opposition presidential candidate Muhammadu Buhari of the All Progressives Congress (APC), speaks during the Nigeria Labour Congress in Abuja, February 9, 2015. (Afolabi Sotunde/Courtesy Reuters)

In a country where elections have routinely been rigged in favor of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) presidential incumbent or his designee, opposition candidate Muhammadu Buhari and his All Progressives Congress have won an astonishing victory. Buhari’s support was nationwide, and his vote total was the largest in four of Nigeria’s six geo-political zones. Unlike 2011, the electorate did not starkly bifurcate along north/south, Muslim/Christian lines. Read more »

Nigeria Security Tracker: Weekly Update March 21-March 27

by John Campbell Wednesday, April 1, 2015
The map above depicts deaths in Nigeria by state. (Source: CFR Nigeria Security Tracker; powered by Tableau) The map above depicts deaths in Nigeria by state. (Source: CFR Nigeria Security Tracker; powered by Tableau)

Below is a visualization and description of some of the most significant incidents of political violence in Nigeria from March 21, 2015 to March 27, 2015. This update also represents violence related to Boko Haram in Cameroon, Chad, and Niger. These incidents will be included in the Nigeria Security Tracker.
Read more »

Nigeria’s President Goodluck Jonathan Concedes to Muhammadu Buhari

by John Campbell Tuesday, March 31, 2015
Nigeria's President Goodluck Jonathan (L) and former military ruler Muhammadu Buhari pose for a photo after signing a peace accord in Abuja March 26, 2015. (Stringer/Courtesy Reuters) Nigeria's President Goodluck Jonathan (L) and former military ruler Muhammadu Buhari pose for a photo after signing a peace accord in Abuja March 26, 2015. (Stringer/Courtesy Reuters)

International and Nigerian media is reporting that Aviation Minister Osita Chidoka and opposition All Progressives Congress Party spokesman Lai Mohammed state that President Goodluck Jonathan has called Muhammadu Buhari to offer his congratulations on Buhari’s victory in the March 28, Nigerian presidential elections. Read more »