In just a few weeks time, Nigeria will hold national elections, marking the first time since independence that civilian administrations will change through the ballot box. This watershed event, however, will take place against the backdrop of significant political tensions and the ever-present threat of violence. To help inform U.S. and international policy towards these important elections and the political parties involved, the Council on Foreign Relations Africa Studies Program is sponsoring a half-day conference entitled "Nigeria: On the Eve of National Elections" on Wednesday April 4.

This conference will be held from 8:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. at 1779 Massachusetts Avenue, NW.

A full conference agenda can be found attached to this message.


8:30 am: Continental Breakfast and Registration

9:00 am: Welcome
Princeton N. Lyman, Council on Foreign Relations

9:15 am: Keynote Address
Ken Wollack, President of the National Democratic Institute

10:00 am: Panel One – Political Party Presentations
Mr. Ojo Maduekwe, Secretary-General of the People's Democratic Party*
Mr. Abb Kyari, All Nigeria People's Party *
Yusuf G. Ali, Democratic People's Party *
Hon. Dr. Usman Bugaji, Action Congress *

Moderator: Robert Pastor, Director of the Center for Democracy and Election Management, American University*

11:15 am: Coffee Break

11:30 am: Panel Two – Implications for United States-Nigerian Relations
H.E. George Obiozor, Nigerian Ambassador to the United States *
Dr. Darren Kew, University of Massachusetts*
John Schidlovsky, Director, International Reporting Project, The Johns Hopkins University – SAIS*

Moderator: Richard Joseph, Director of African Studies, Northwestern University*

12:45 pm: Luncheon Address
Mr. Nuhu Ribadu, Executive Director, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission Federal Government of Nigeria*

Close: 2:00 pm

This conference is the third in a series on the 2007 Nigerian elections cosponsored by the Council on Foreign Relations, the Center for Strategic and International Studies, the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, the United States Institute of Peace, the Africa Studies Program at the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies, and African Studies Program at Northwestern University.

To register for this event or to request more information, please contact Mr. Jeff Friedman
at, or at (202) 518 3477

* Confirmed
** Invited