Nigeria The Federal Republic of Nigeria
Geographic Influences • Northwest – dominated by two groups that combined as the: Hausa-Fulanipeople, • area is predominantly Muslim. • Est. the Sokoto Caliphate state • Northeast – area is home to many smaller groups, such as theKunari, • predominantly Muslim. • Middle Belt – many smaller ethnic groups • Mix of Muslims and Christians. • Southwest – Yoruba dominate the area. • 40% Muslim • 40% Christian • 20% native religions. • Southeast – area dominated by the Igbo, • Predominantly Roman Catholic • Some Protestant Christians as well • Southern Zone – area along Niger River Delta, people are from various small minority groups.
Societal Characteristics & Concerns Political Cleavages • Poverty– 60% of all Nigerians live below poverty line, with many living in absolute poverty. • Gap between Rich & Poor– similar to Mexico, however in Nigeria now growth is being made to alleviate this gap. • Health Issues – high rates of HIV/AIDS, one in every eleven HIV/AIDS sufferers live in Nigeria. • Literacy – for males is 75.7% and for females 60.6% (World averages are 83% men, 71% for women) • Ethnicity – Nigeria has between 250-400 ehnic groups, • Huasa-Fulani, Igbo, and Yoruba dominant. • Groups have very little in common and speak different languages • Religion – Islam, Christianity, and native religions. • Region – follow along ethnic and religious lines • Urban vs. Rural Differences – most political organizing, interest groups, and political protest takes place in cities • Social Class – deep divisions among social classes. • Wealth of elites stems from access to Nigeria’s resources. • Wealthy elite find it difficult to give up wealth associated with access to state treasury and appeal to religious and ethnic identities. • Educated elite would like to see adoption of democratic principles.
TraditionsPolitical AuthorityFederalism Legacy of Nigeria’s History
“Political Traditions” • Trade Connections – Sahara Desert “Golden Trade of the Moors”; Niger River & Atlantic Ocean Access • Influence of Islam – Trade with North Africa put Hausa & other groups in contact with Arab education and Islam, sharia emerges as dominant political principle • Kinship-based Politics – village key political entity • Complex Political Identities– contrast between centralized state and local governance. (Oyo & Ife centralized states in south vs. small trading-states in north) • Democratic Impulses – accountability, representative government, and democracy practiced by many villages, including Yoruba and Igbo.
“Political Traditions” (Continued) • Authoritarian Rule – British strengthened the authority of traditional chiefs, making them accountable only to British. British dominated economically. Local rulers less responsibility to the people. • Interventionist State – colonialists trained chiefs to operate government. Indirect imperialism. Checks on authority that existed in Britain did not have roots in Nigeria. Expectations that citizens should passively accept actions of rulers. • Individualism – led to a tendency of chiefs to think about personal benefits of governance, rather than collective good
Impact of Colonial Era • Christianity – British introduction of Christianity created a split between Christian and Muslim dominated areas. • Islam dominant in the north • Christianity in the south. • Intensification of Ethnic Politics – emergence of three dominant groups: Hausa-Fulani, Igbo, and Yoruba. • British pitted groups against each other by promising rewards to some groups but not others. • Anti-colonialism movement emerged during 20th century appealed to ethnic identities to gain followers and supporters of decolonization
Legacy ofIndependence Era (1960-Present) • Parliamentary vs. Presidential System– • Nigeria operated under parliamentary system from 1960-1979. • Ethnic divisions made parliamentary system difficult • Switched to presidential system with separate legislature and independent judiciary • neither has been able to check power of the president • Intensification of Ethnic Conflict – • After independence Hausa-Fulani dominated parliament because of large population. • They formed a coalition with Igbo of the southeast to ensure their dominance • this created added tension and conflict with Yoruba of the west. In 1966, a group of Igbo military officers seized power.
Public Authority & Political Power • “National Question”:differing opinions about how political power should be distributed and how the government should be constructed. Questions asked: • How is the country to be governed given its diversity? • What should be the institutional form of government? • In Nigeria differences are more distinct and run deeper than other countries • Since independence in 1960, neither leaders nor citizens agree about who should rule and howQuestions about whether Nigeria should remain one nation • Regional disagreements & hostilities • Problems traditionally solved by military force and authoritarianism
Federalism In Nigeria • Nigeria is a federal political system (in theory) • Currently neither federalism or checks & balances operate, and state & local governments are completely dependent on the central government • Usually Federalism seen as positive: • Federalism promises power-sharing • Allows citizens more contact points with government
Federalism In Nigeria • Unlike most federal systems however, Nigeria’s authority is top-down • Federalism in Nigeria’s Republics: • 1st: Decentralized • 2nd, 3rd, 4th : continue with U.S. Style President • Strong Executive • System of Checks and balances • Bicameral Legislature • Independent Judiciary • Nigeria’s Structure (at a glance): 36 States, 774 local governments • Each state and local governments have three branches of Federal government (Legislative, Executive, Judicial) • Executive has been most dominant traditionally
Federal Character • “Federal Character” • Elicits the unevenness and inequality • Ensure recognition of all ethnic, religious, & regional groups • Seeks to ensure ethnic balance • Nigerian Constitutional Provisions • Senators represent diverse states • Representatives elected from diverse districts • President must receive 25% of the votes in 2/3 of the districts • Negatives of Federalism • Federalism bloats bureaucracy • Created benefit seeking & autonomy seeking groups • Promotes corruption within bureaucracy • Jobs created to satisfy demands of various ethnic groups • Legislative branch suffers from gridlock • Competition over government resources
Federalism In Nigeria (Continued) • Southerners argue that federalism will only exist when central government devolves some authority to the state & local governments • Nigerians of the Niger Delta believe they should control their own resources • Redistribution of the region’s oil wealth should be prohibited • Southerners suggest that police duties should also be the responsibility of local and state governments • This “True Federalism Movement” not supported by Northerners • North has few resources and very little revenue to share • Northerners benefit more from redistribution of wealth programs
Constitutionalism • First constitution written in 1914 • Nine constitutions between 1914 and 1995 • During colonial rule: 1922, 1946, 1951, 1954, 1960 • After colonial rule: 1963, 1979, 1989, 1999 • Current constitution written in 1999 – • Amended the 1979 version • has been heavily amended • Acceptance of “constitutionalism” as a guiding set of principles has eluded Nigeria • Military and civilian leaders have felt free to disobey and suspend constitutional principles or change constitutions not to their liking
History of the Executive Branch • 1979, 2nd Republic, presidential system replaced parliamentary system based on British model • Multiple ethnic groups fragmented the multi-party system and the legislature and prevented a prime minister from gaining the necessary authority to rule • Belief was that a president could symbolize national unity and rise above weak party system • U.S. presidential model with two-term limits • 1983, Major-General MuhammaduBuhari initiated palace coup, set precedent for military coups and military rule • Civilian rule returned in 1999, President Obasanjo
History of the The Executive Branch • Military Rule • 7 military rulers have all ruled differently • All promised transition to democracy • Only Obasanjo in 1979 and General Abubakar in 1999 delivered democratic transition • Generals Buhari (1983-85), Babangida (1985-93), and Abacha (1993-98) used repression and violence • All military & civilian regimes concentrated power in hands of the executive • Patrimonialism • Generals/Presidents head of patron-client system • Dispense government jobs and resources as rewards to political supporters • Cabinet positions & bureaucratic chiefs part of president’s patronage system • Patrimonialism in Nigeria is unstable which has led to recurring coups
History of the Executive BranchObasanjo Administration • Reformed armed services • Revitalized economy • Addressed public welfare • Improved standards of governance • Root our misconduct and inefficiency • Managed oil industry ~ ~ ~ • Clientelism, Kickbacks, and Delays in anti-corruption commissions ensued
History of the Executive BranchObasanjo Administration • Est. the Peace and Reconciliation Commission in 1999 • In response to Civil Society Groups • Refused to make his findings against former military leaders public • Leaked regardless • Succumbed to Patronage in exchange for his election • Helped again in 2003 • Led to impeachment trial
Functions of the President of Nigeria • Chosen directly by the electorate • He is both the chief of state and head of government and heads the Federal Executive Council, or cabinet. The President is responsible for: • assenting to and signing Bills • referring a Bill back to the National Assembly for reconsideration of the Bill's constitutionality • referring a Bill to the Constitutional Court for a decision on the Bill's constitutionality • summoning the National Assembly, or Parliament to an extraordinary sitting to conduct special business • making any appointments that the Constitution or legislation requires the President to make, other than as head of the national executive • appointing commissions of inquiry • calling a national referendum in terms of an Act of Parliament • receiving and recognizing foreign diplomatic and consular representatives • appointing ambassadors, plenipotentiaries, and diplomatic and consular representatives • pardoning or reprieving offenders and remitting any fines, penalties or forfeitures • conferring honors
Bureaucracy • British installed elaborate civil service system during colonial period • Nigerians were allowed to fill lower-level jobs within bureaucracy • Civil service sector continued to grow after independence • Current bureaucracy is bloated, corrupt, and inefficient. Bribery is common. • Jobs in civil service are often awarded through the patron-client system, Prebendalism. • Nigerian form of corruption • Corruption and informal influence rampant • Extreme form of Clientelism
The Para-Statal SectorExecutive Branch’s Federal Ministries • The executive branch is divided into Federal Ministries headed by a minister appointed by the President • In some cases a Federal minister is responsible for more than one ministry (e.g. Environment and Housing may be combined), and a minister may be assisted by one or more ministers of State. • Each ministry also has a Permanent Secretary, who is a senior civil servant. • must include at least one member of each of the 36 states in his cabinet. • The President's appointments are confirmed by the Senate of Nigeria.
The Para-Statal Sector • How Para-statals are run: • The ministries are responsible for various Parastatals • Corporate enterprises, owned by state • Hybrid agencies (somewhat traditional and also private) • Board members are appointed by government ministers, and corporate executives are part of the president’s patronage system • State ultimately controls these business interactions (Corrupt & inept) • Purpose of Para-Statals: • Parastatals insure that the state controls private interest as well as fulfills social & economic functions • Parastatals serve as contact point
The Para-Statal SectorExecutive Branch’s Federal Ministries • Functions: • Furnish Public facilities • Water, power, communications, transportation • Accelerate economic development by controlling the commanding heights of the economy • Steel, petroleum, gas, refining, fertilizer, agriculture • Intended to provide basic utilities and services • At a low cost (cheaper than private firms could) • Nationalistic dimension that relates to issues of sovereignty over sectors perceived sensitive for national security
Relationship Between The Para-Statal Sector and Corpratism • State Corporatism • Corporatism – authoritarian political system that allows for political input from selected interest groups outside the government structure • In Nigeria, this input is provided by para-statals, because they are controlled by the government • Autonomous of Government (in theory) • such as universities (Education) • National Broadcasting Commission (Information) • Nigerian National Petroleum Corp (Petroleum). • Other para-statals are the responsibility of the Office of the Presidency, • Independent National Electoral Commission • The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission • The Federal Civil Service Commission
Judiciary • Early years of after independence judiciary had great deal of autonomy…began to change however • ‘93 worst year for corruption- known as “Judicial Terrorism” • Judicial review was suspended • Military acts above judicial review • Presidential cronies appointed as justices • Autonomy stripped by military decrees that nullified court decisions and setup quasi-judicial tribunals outside regular system • Today judiciary is responsible for interpreting laws in accordance with the Constitution, so judicial review exist in theory
Judiciary • Major Cases: • In 1993, MshoodAbiolao, winner of annulled 1993 election was detained and died in custody. Presiding judges changed often and critics attacked the military cronyism of the judicial system • In 1995, activist Ken Saro-Wiwa, and 8 other activists were detained and executed under court orders arranged by the military and presided over by military officers • Eventual return of civilian rule led courts to revived independence and credibility • Court structure at state & federal level, highest court is the Supreme Court • Shari’a Courts (based on Islamic religious law) exist in parallel existence with courts developed on British model… • Gaining more power… • Authority has branched into criminal realm
State Governments • Generally weak and dependent • 90% of state incomes derive from Federal government • Only two states could survive without federal subsidies • To proliferate states- developed six zones • Political appointments based upon the six zones and rotate over time • Gubernatorial reform source of conflict
XXI. Public Policy • Top-down, • self-interested rule established by British during colonial era • State control of resources means that those in the pyramid get the spoils, they alone have access to wealth and influence. Loyal clients of patronage structured pyramids includes: • “Kaduna Mafia”, “Babangida’s Boys”, and “Abacha’s Boys” • Power concentrated in hands of the president & cabinet ministers through channels established by patron clientelism • Loyalty Pyramid – senior officials supported by broader base of loyal junior officials • Military controls pyramids, pyramids supported by “guns” (Force); therefore, protesting system can be dangerous
Evolution of Legislature • Until first coup in 1966, Westminster model… • Military council ruled from 1966-1979 • Nigerian legislature under military governments: • have had no power • Replaced by a bicameral legislature 1979-1983 • The National Assemblyof the Federal Republic of Nigeria is a bicameral legislature • It consists of a Senate and a 360-member House of Representatives.
Leadership • The Senate is chaired by the President of the Nigerian Senate • Chief function is to guide and regulate the proceedings in the Senate • The House is chaired by the Speaker of the House of Representatives. • At any joint session of the Assembly, the President of the Senate presides and in his absence the Speaker of the House presides.
The Senate • Is the upper house of the National Assembly • It consists of 109 senators • Directly elected by popular vote • The 36 states are divided in 3 senatorial districts each electing one senator • the Federal Capital Territory elects only one senator. • Senators are ethnically and religiously diverse • Only 4 of 109 Senators were women as of 2003 elections
The House of Representatives • lower house of the National Assembly. • The current House of Representatives, formed following elections held in April 2007 • has a total of 360 members who are elected in single-member constituencies using the simple majority system. • Members serve four-year terms. • Only 23 of the 360 representatives are women
Summary of the April 2007 Nigerian National Assembly Election Results
Legislature and Executive • Under civilian government Legislature has been unable to check power of the president • Subjected to great pressure by the executive • Never assumed full constitutional role • Legislative dependence on the executive for allowances and resources to please constituents • In Nigeria, President controls and disburses public revenues • Assembly can only influence it by right to pass budget
Legislative Changes • Corruption scandals – • In 1999 president of the Senate and speaker of the lower house were removed for perjury and forgery. • In 2000 the Senate president was removed for accepting kickbacks for a government contract • 2001 budget negotiations became deadlocked…2002, same • Obasanyo impounded funds • Impeachment precedings started- Aug 02 • Pres apologized and compromised • 2003- Pres removed 80% of incumbents from primaries • PDP had courts reverse election results
How A Nigerian Bill Becomes Law • The power of the National Assembly to make laws shall be exercised by bills passed by both the Senate and the House of Representatives and, assented to by the President. • A bill may originate in either the Senate or the House of Representatives and shall not become law unless it has been passed and, assented to in accordance with the provisions of this section. • Where a bill has been passed by the House in which it originated, it shall be sent to the other House, and it shall be presented to the President for assent when it has been passed by that other House and agreement has been reached between the two Houses on any amendment made on it. • Where a bill is presented to the President for assent, he shall within thirty days thereof signify that he assents or that he withholds assent. • Where the President withholds his assent and the bill is again passed by each House by two-thirds majority, the bill shall become law and the assent of the President shall not be required.
How A Nigerian Bill Becomes Law • Where the President, withholds assent, then the bill shall again be presented to the National Assembly sitting at a joint meeting • If passed by two-thirds majority of members of both houses at such joint meeting, the bill shall become law and the assent of the President shall not be required.
Political Parties • Party System in Nigeria: • Factionalism led to creation of many political parties however, • Use of winner-take- all has led to domination by largest ethnic groups • Parties formed and faded around personalities • Multi-party system reinforced and strengthened ethnic and religious cleavages • Independent National Election Committee (INEC) – registered a number of parties following the death of Abacha in 1998 • In order to run candidates for the legislative and presidential elections of 1999, a party had to qualify by receiving at least 5% of the votes in two-thirds of the states in the 1998 election • This cut the number of parties significantly, only 5 parties were eligible to run candidates in the 2003 election
Political Parties • People’s Democratic Party (PDP) • Well-established Party • Began running candidates in 1998 • Party of President OlesugunObesanjo (Igbo, Christian from the North) • Obesanjo received 62% of vote in 2003 election • PDP gained majority in National Assembly and most of the governors throughout the country • Due to voter fraud, difficult to determine accurate level of support for the PDP • All Nigeria People’s Party (ANPP) • General MuhammaduBuhari, Muslim from the North, ran against Obesanjo • Received about 32% of the vote • His running mate and potential future candidate was ChubaOkadigbo, an Igbo from the Southeast
Voting Behavior • Nigerians have voted in elections since 1959 • Voting patterns difficult to determine because of fraud, postponement, and election cancellation • Political parties are numerous and fluid • Babangida’s annulment of 1993 election hurt political participation during the 1990s • Local, state, & national elections have continued since the late 1990s • About 2/3 of eligible voters participated in the 2003 election