NIGERIA: Democracy, Its Pains

When the time came to vote in Nigeria's first national elections last week, the candidates were too tired and hoarse for last-minute attacks on opponents, instead led their numbed election-eve audiences in singing tribal ballads, on the plausible theory that enough was enough.

For three months the country's 9,000,000 voters had endured every variety of speech, parade and accusation. In the slums of Lagos, naked children ran through the streets blowing "ZEE-EEK" on whistles handed out by supporters of Eastern Region Premier Nnamdi ("Zik") Azikiwe, or noisily deflated colored toy balloons producing the sound of a crowing cock, symbol of...

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