Democracy in Nigeria

Democracy Ratings

Freedom House 2018


4 out of 7

(where lower scores are more democratic)

Freedom Status:

Partly Free

EIU Democracy Index 2017


4.44 out of 10

(where higher scores are more democratic)

World Ranking:


Polity IV 2016



(from -10 to 10, where higher scores are more democratic)


Open Anocracy

Political System

System of Government Presidential
Presidential Electoral System Two-round system

(Declared in first round if president earns at least 25% of vote in two-thirds of Nigeria’s states)

Last Presidential Election 2015
Next Presidential Election 2019
Presidential Term Limits Two, four-year terms.
System of Appointment to Legislature Lower Chamber: elected in single-member constituencies through first past the post system

Upper Chamber: indirectly elected by senatorial districts (each state is divided into three, bar the Federal Capital Territory, which only elects one representative)

Last Legislative Election


Next Legislative Election


Number of Seats in Legislature Lower Chamber: 360

Upper Chamber: 109

Female quota, representation in lower house No


Last presidential election (2015)
Candidate (Party) Votes (%)
1st round 2nd round not needed
Muhammadu Buhari 54
Goodluck Jonathan 45
Adebayo Ayeni 0
Ganiyu Galadima 0
Sam Eke 0
Rufus Salau 0
Mani Ahmad 0
Allagoa Chinedu 0
Martin Onovo 0
Tunde Anifowose-Kelani 0
Chekwas Okorie 0
Comfort Sonaiya 0
Godson Okoye 0
Ambrose Albert Owuru 0

Last legislative election (2015)    
Party Votes (%) Seats
All Progressives Congress 225
People’s Democratic Party 125
Other parties 10

Nigeria on DiA

#BookClub: Africa Since Decolonization

1 December 2023

Martin Welz

What is African about digital citizenship in Africa?

15 September 2023

Tony Roberts & Tanja Bosch

The needs of Nigerian adolescents and youth

17 April 2023

Sopuruchukwu Obiesie

How and Why Internet Shutdowns Threaten Democracy in Africa

30 March 2023

Mwai Daka, Marisa Lourenço & Nic Cheeseman

Where is Hochnamibian? – a rejoinder to Bjarnesen et al

22 March 2023

Bert van Pinxteren & Taiwo Oloruntoba-Oju

The Elephant in the Room: Citizenship and language (a reply to Bjarnesen et al)

15 February 2023

Bert van Pinxteren & Taiwo Oloruntoba-Oju

Creating Belonging or Ruling by Exclusion? Politics, Citizenship and African Governance

23 January 2023

Jesper Bjarnesen, Cristiano Lanzano, Henning Melber, and Patience Mususa

Nigeria's new Kingmakers

22 June 2022

Afolabi Adekaiyaoja

How African countries respond to fake news and hate speech

9 December 2021

Lisa Garbe, Lisa-Marie Selvik, Pauline Lemaire

Digital Democracy in Africa - Watch the Roundtable!

11 October 2021

Democracy in Africa


7 October 2021

Calum Booth & Nic Cheeseman

How popular is China in Africa? And how do people think about its role?

23 September 2021

Folashade Soule & Edem E. Selormey

How Nigeria can best work with China in the future

23 September 2021

Abdul-Gafar Tobi Oshodi & Ufo Okeke Uzodike

African Coups in the 21st Century

17 September 2021

Patrick Conley

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