December 5, 2017

Chude Jideonwo, author and RED Co-founder and Managing Partner
Moderated by Chiedo Nwankwor, Visiting Research Associate and Adjunct Lecturer

Author and Nigerian media consultant Chude Jideonwo visited the Johns Hopkins SAIS community to share insights from his new book, “How to Win Elections in Africa: Parallels with Donald Trump.” During the discussion, moderated by African Studies lecturer Chiedo Nwankwor, Jideonwo read passages examining the concept that ideology does not matter to win elections in Africa. The book further explores how political parties, civil societies, donors, social activists, media, and money feeds into the goal of helping citizens make their voices heard through free and fair elections.

According to Jideonwo, voters can uproot the power structures that govern them. His book draws examples from his experiences leading the campaign communications of two Nigerian presidents: Goodluck Jonathan and Muhammadu Buhari, and their Ghanian counterpart, Nana Akufo-Addo. Jideonwo stated that Africa stands at the cusp of a great change and the citizens are beginning to demand the dissolution of political structures and establishments that no longer serve them well.

However, Jideonwo said that political institutions are still important in winning elections and there are other variables that contribute to winning elections in Africa. His political consulting firm, StateCraft Inc. has been able to support citizen-led engagement in Nigeria, Ghana, and Kenya by conducting mapping of the countries and developing winning strategies for their clients.