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Nigeria – Historical Foundations. Federalist Structure (Muslim North, Christian South) 36 States. The Nigerian Nation at a Glance. 2. Per Capita GDP Rankings. United States ($37,800) United Kingdom ($27,700) Mexico ($9,000) Russia ($8,900) Iran ($7,000) China ($5,000) Nigeria ($800).

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Nigeria – Historical Foundations


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2 per capita gdp rankings
2. Per Capita GDP Rankings
  • United States ($37,800)
  • United Kingdom ($27,700)
  • Mexico ($9,000)
  • Russia ($8,900)
  • Iran ($7,000)
  • China ($5,000)
  • Nigeria ($800)
legitimacy
Legitimacy
  • Nigeria is a relatively young country, achieving independence in 1960, this makes establishing legitimate government more difficult
  • Fragmentation – tendency in developing countries to fall apart along ethnic, regional, and/or religious lines
    • Nigeria is diverse religiously, ethnically, linguistically
  • Corruption – Much of the oil money coming into the country goes directly to government officials, not to the people
    • Patron-client relationships very important (prebendalism)
constitutionalism
Constitutionalism
  • Nine constitutions drafted since 1914
    • Five under colonial rule and four since
  • Military and civilian leaders have felt free to disobey and suspend constitutional principles or change constitutions not to their liking
colonial era
Colonial Era
  • Britain’s imposition of a federal structure on Nigeria grouped together many different historically antagonistic ethnic groups
  • Aggravated tensions when regional boundaries coincided with ethnic divisions
  • Over 250 distinct ethnic groups
colonial era1
Colonial Era
  • Christianity – British introduction of Christianity created a divide between Christian and Muslim areas
    • Islam (Sharia law) dominant in the north, Christianity in the south
  • Intensification of Ethnic Politics – emergence of three dominant groups: Hausa-Fulani (north), Yoruba (southwest), Igbo (southeast)
    • These cleavages generally coincide with geographic cleavages (reinforcing)
    • British pitted groups against each other to maintain control
independence era
Independence Era
  • The 1st Republic (1960-1966)
    • British Westminster model
  • Biafran Civil War and Military Rule (1966-1979)
    • Ethnic + political violence
  • The 2nd and 3rd Republics (1979-1999)
    • Presidential system, FPTP, plurality elections
    • Alternating military, civilian rule (coups)
  • The 4th Republic (1999 to Present)
    • 2007 – First peaceful turnover of power between civilian presidents after elections
    • PDP now dominant political party
independence era 1960 present
Independence Era (1960-Present)
  • Parliamentary vs. Presidential System – Nigeria operated under parliamentary system from 1960-1979
    • Ethnic divisions made parliamentary system difficult
    • So switched to presidential system with separate legislature and independent judiciary
    • But neither has been able to check the power of the president
  • Intensification of Ethnic Conflict – After independence, Hausa-Fulani (Muslims in North) dominated parliament because of large population
independence era continued
Independence Era continued
  • Military Rule
    • A series of coups d’état and rule by military leaders during the past 50+ years
    • Democratization efforts interrupted by military intervention
  • Economic dependence on Oil
    • This has led to corruption and has caused great harm to the environment and low levels of legitimacy for govt.
      • Because of corruption, most Nigerians have not benefited from oil wealth
      • Government-dominated economy
    • Collapse of world oil prices in early 1980s caused a crisis for the government because nearly all its income was dependent on oil (rentier state)
structural adjustment privatization
Structural Adjustment / Privatization
  • 1980s
    • Developed structural adjustment program (SAP) with support of international financial institutions (IMF, World Bank)
  • Privatization central to adjustment program
    • Some parastatals sold off
    • Intended to generate revenue, reduce state expenditures, improve efficiency
    • Disappointing results
steps toward democratization
Steps Toward Democratization
  • 1995 - New constitution eliminating military rule
  • Freer press
  • Regular elections since 1999
  • Protections for ethnic and religious groups.
  • Redrawing of state boundaries to increase representation + more states created
  • Direct election of president
  • Electoral support required from different subnational regions
  • Creation of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC)
nigeria in the world of states
Nigeria in the World of States
  • Nigeria has military and economic power in West African region
  • Nigeria has significantly increased its importance as a regional power through its leadership in the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS)
  • Nigeria forced to seek support from international financial institutions (IMF, World Bank)
    • Forced to accept direction from foreign agencies
  • Influential member of Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries