Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan may not be the most prominent international leader, but he’s one of the most popular on Facebook. Jonathan has 246,000 fans—more than Germany’s Angela Merkel or South Africa’s Jacob Zuma—and the president updates his own status most days with comments on the news. Jonathan even announced he would run for president in 2011 on Facebook in a status update last month, stealing the thunder of his rival Ibrahim Babangida, who made a more conventional announcement the same day. But the Nigerian president’s social networking goes beyond public stunts, like when he responded to a user’s comment about the country’s growing energy needs. Some posts rake in 6,000 comments. About 1.7 million Nigerians are on Facebook, a tiny slice of its population of 150 million, and though Jonathan’s Facebooking has drawn some criticism, many cheer the effort as a way to draw young people into politics.
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