Investors have reacted favorably to President Goodluck Jonathan’s peaceful handover of power and Muhammadu Buhari’s election as new president of Nigeria, Forbes reports.
The Nigerian market was up 8 percent today after the March 31 vote count, and over the last few days it recovered most of its pre-poll losses, while sovereign bond yields have fallen.
Nigerian billionaire Tony Elumelu said the election set a vital precedent for Africa’s largest economy, and for the rest of the continent.
“I’m so happy for my country. I’m so happy for the continent as well. We want a positive narrative out of Africa,” Elumelu in an interview while visiting London. “I congratulate the president-elect, and I trust he will do well to justify the massive confidence people have put in him.”
“But more important is the incumbent president. He is the hero. He did very well. He was quite magnanimous and forward looking. He is someone concerned about his place in history. First he created the environment that gave rise to this type of independent conduct for the election, and then he accepted the outcome.”
In 2011, when Jonathan ran against — and defeated — Buhari — more than 800 people died in post-election violence. On Tuesday, Jonathan publicly conceded and congratulated his opponent, defusing tension.
During election campaigning, Buhari promised to end corruption in Nigeria and improve security.
Jonathan’s Peoples Democratic Party has won every election since the country returned to civilian rule in 1999. When the PDP postponed the election for six weeks, some opposition voices cried foul, adding uncertainty to an economy reeling from the collapse of oil prices. Oil is the country’s largest export and contributes more than 70 percent of government revenue, Forbes reports.