Social Democratic Party (Nigeria)

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Social Democratic Party
IdeologySocial democracy
Democratic socialism
Social justice
Political positionCentre-left to left-wing

The Social Democratic Party of Nigeria, popularly known as SDP, was established as a political party to encompass the ideals of a center left political organization. It was initially one of the products of a democracy project by former President Ibrahim Babangida to have two detribalized political parties, one a little to the left and one for the right. However, during the Nigerian Third Republic it was seen as a moderate party with a flavor for young radical intellectuals and socialists. In its manifesto, it called for concerted efforts to improve the people's welfare and fight for social justice.

Party structure and strength[edit]

After the banning of 13 prospective parties by the administration of Ibrahim Babangida in 1989. Some of the associations decided to re-align. The People's Front of Nigeria, People's Solidarity Party and the Nigerian Labor Party were the three main inchoate groups that emerged to form the core constituency of the new SDP. The leadership of the party was mostly dominated by Northern Nigerians, with Babagana Kingibe elected party chairman in 1990 over his rival Mohammed Arzika. On the other hand, the electoral strength of the party lain in the Yoruba states and Imo and Anambra states. The party won 57% of the Senate seats in the 1992 National Assembly election, and won 53% of the seats of the House of Representatives in the same election. The party was largely financed by the Federal Government and a few individuals, such as Shehu Musa Yar'Adua, Francis Nzeribe and M.K.O. Abiola. The first presidential primary election conducted by the party, Yar'adua collated about 480,000 votes dominating his primary opponent, Olu Falae in the first round.[1] However, those elections were cancelled by Babangida. In second primary election under an adopted system called Option A4, another financier, Abiola (a former member of the National Council of Nigeria and the Cameroons and once a state chairman of the National Party of Nigeria) won the primary election on March 1993, after the first election was canceled. Abiola's contested the national election which was later annulled, a seemingly coherent legacy of Nigeria's swivelling and revolving door like historical political landscape.

Among former members, Atiku Abubakar, Jerry Gana, Abubakar Rimi, Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, Umaru Yar'Adua, Abdullahi Aliyu Sumaila, Dapo Sarumi, and Mohammed Arzika later became senior figures in the People's Democratic Party (PDP).


1.Energy: The State shall supervise adequate energy supply for both industrial and social purposes

2. Rural Development: The State shall be committed to the reduction of rural poverty and rural-urban migrations through support for community organizations and community development.

3. Mining and Petrochemicals: The State shall exclusively ensure a responsible and controlled exploitation of mineral resources.

4. Labour, Employment and Wages. There shall be representation of Labour in all organs of government dealing with the affairs of the working people. SDP shall improve workers' welfare, the unemployment situation and the quality of industrial arbitration.

5. Education: SDP shall ultimately provide free education programs at all levels. SDP shall integrate in the formal system the political education of the citizenry.

6. Defense: SDP shall encourage as a deliberate policy of self reliance, local production of arms and military armament as well as exploring the possibilities of setting up armament industries in locations within the country.

7. Police: SDP shall launch an in house political education of among the police to change their attitude to the state, perception of their and obligations and relations with the citizenry.

SDP Revived[edit]

After the ban on old SDP as part of democratic process of Major General Ibrahim Babangida. A new merger party emerged in the name of SDP was formed by coalition of 13 political parties.[2][3] The revived party contested for various political posts in the 2015 Nigerian general elections conducted election[4] except the President which conceded to People's Democratic Party candidate Ex- President Goodluck Jonathan[5][6]

Ideology of the Revived Party[edit]

According to Chief Olu Falae,[7] SDP was created to mount pressure on the two prominent Parties in Nigeria People's Democratic Party and All Progressive Congress. And also provide credible alternative to Nigerians, as the SDP predates both the APC and PDP and has a rich history of winning elections in Nigeria.

Reasons for the Reviving of the Party[edit]

  • In furtherance of the credible democratic ideas of the SDP after the mass endorsement by the Nigerian electorate in June 12 General Election of 1993
  • To be the third political platform that will attract credible, competent and dynamic leaders into governance
  • A platform that will truly fight corruption in Nigeria and enthrone the rule of law
  • A congregation of patriot and social Democrats that will give the people true representation
  • A rebirth of an ideological party with structured deliverables for the people
  • A truly national party for all Nigerian devoid of imposition and impunity
  • An inclusive party that opens its political space for young Nigerians to further their political aspirations
  • A party that is gender sensitive and also in affirmative standing with people with disability
  • A party that will unify the Nigerian people and give voice and action to their aspirations and desires

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Xinhua General News Service, "former Nigerian general won first round of presidential primaries", SEPTEMBER 16, 1992.
  2. ^[permanent dead link]
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2015-09-24. Retrieved 2015-08-03.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  6. ^
  7. ^[permanent dead link]


  • The PRS Group, Inc./Political Risk Services, Nigeria Country Report, SOCIAL DEMOCRATIC PARTY (SDP) April 1, 1993.
  • Social Democratic Party Official Website (