Nigeria's president died yesterday around 9pm and immediately following his death, his Vice President was sworn into power that same night in a ceremony closed to the public and un-televised with footage only surfacing today. Umaru Yar'Adua had not been seen by the public for over 3 months as news and speculation about his health intensified. His absence let to a very fragile political atmosphere in Africa's most popular country. Making matters worse was the power wielded by his wife Turai, who knew her husband was incapacitated but was not ready to renounce power.
Even Jonathan, his Vice was never allowed to see him and she even prevented Jonathan from sitting in his chair as acting president for executive meetings. Yar'Adua returned from treatment in Saudi Arabia and lived in an ambulance at the presidential villa, Aso Rocko where access to him was very restricted only to those granted permission by his wife. As a result, public opinion is the last few months have been very hash towards the president's family. Most saw this as a selfish grip on power.
His death comes as confirmation to reports published earlier of the late president as comatose. In understanding Nigeria's political landscape, it is worth noting that Yah'Ardua is a muslim and Jonathan a Christian Southerner, hence the struggle for influence in a largely volatile political landscape that has seen many ethnic, religious and political violence ha played a key role in the way events have unfolded.
News of his death