6th Floor, Woodrow Wilson Center

National War College Nigeria Briefing


On Thursday, March 15, 2018, the Wilson Center Africa Program hosted a private briefing on Nigeria and U.S.-Nigeria relations for senior and mid-level U.S. Government officials currently studying at the National War College. Dr. Monde Muyangwa, Director of the Wilson Center Africa Program, offered welcome remarks and speaker introductions, followed by a National War College introduction and statement of purpose by Lieutenant Colonel James Moyes.

This broad but in-depth discussion centered around Nigeria’s political, economic, and security landscape and the current state of and prospects for U.S.-Nigeria relations. Some topics covered included the current strategies for countering Boko Haram in Nigeria, including the impediments to and shortcomings of these strategies; context on the complex and rich history of U.S.-Nigeria relations; the current political climate of Nigeria and its historical bases; the scope and significance of China’s involvement in Nigeria; and, the opportunities for continuing to engage with Nigeria’s dynamic and mobile youth and diaspora populations.

Recommendations for ways forward on the U.S.-Nigeria relationship, addressing governance challenges in Nigeria, and countering the spread of Boko Haram were made to help brief the National War College colleagues as they prepare for a trip to the region. Some recommendations from speakers included broadening and strengthening the cohesion and coordination of the responses to Boko Haram; helping to facilitate the integration of the northern and southern Nigerian economies and linking more remote areas with the center; and, overall, recognizing areas where the U.S. can help further good governance and security while acknowledging the agencies and capacities of this large and complex state.

Overall, this was a forward-leaning and important discussion about the largest economy on the continent that plays a significant role on the African and global stages. 

This event was held under Chatham House non-attribution rules.