Last year's elections in Nigeria saw fraud on a scale never seen before. This has severely undermined the authority of the government in the eyes of the masses, so much so that the judiciary are now overturning some of the results. This has led to illusions that the judiciary is now a friend of democracy and even "revolutionary". Nothing could be further from the truth.

This article, written this summer, highlights the material and human devastation provoked by the oil barons in Nigeria. They have sucked out billions of dollars from the Niger Delta region without any benefit accruing to the poor masses that inhabit the regions. That explains the violence and constant conflict. It is an utter condemnation of the Nigerian bourgeoisie that is totally incapable of solving any of the pressing problems facing the masses.

Once again, just as the general strike was starting to have an effect, the leaders of the Nigerian trade unions called it off. The regime was on its knees, but it has survived thanks to the unwillingness of the trade union leaders to go all the way. It highlights the need for a genuine fighting leadership. The Marxists can play an important role in building this.

The contradictions and tensions in Nigerian society have exploded and the class struggle is back firmly on the agenda. Nationwide strike action has been called to battle government proposals to raise petrol prices, increase the VAT, and sell two state-owned refineries. After two days of solid support for the strike, the struggle continues.

Less than a month ago the present government of Nigeria was brought into office on the basis of blatant and massive fraud in the elections. We predicted it would be a weak regime with no real base in society. Faced with a general strike this regime has already been forced to make concessions. But it is only playing for time.

The recent elections in Nigeria were blatantly rigged, but the nature of the official opposition – as corrupt as the clique in power – means the masses have no clear point of reference to rally round. In this situation the responsibility of the leaders of the labour movement is enormous. If they gave a lead the masses would rally behind them and it would mean the end of this regime and the beginning of the struggle for socialism.

For the first time in years there was one joint Mayday rally in Nigeria of all the trade unions. The Marxists intervened successfully in spite of attempts by the police to stop the distribution of material. Meanwhile the petit bourgeois left are once again making the same mistakes as in the past by mouthing the same slogans as the bourgeois “opposition”.

The recent elections in Nigeria were blatantly rigged. The problem is that the official bourgeois oppositions is incapable of doing anything about it. That is because they serve the same interests. It is up to the working class to build its own party through the trade unions and offer a genuine socialist way out of the present crisis.

The Nigerian authorities are attempting to crush all independent student union representation. At the OAU campus the students are valiantly defending their right to organise but have been met with a brutal response. Please add your name to the protest.

Join us!

Help build the forces of Marxism worldwide!

Join the IMT!

Upcoming Events

No events found