Nigeria - Loudoun County Public Schools

Think… “It’s all about the cleavages”
System of Government: Presidential System
Distribution of Power: Federal System
Electoral System: Single Member District Plurality
Constitution: Constitution of 1999
Legislature: Bicameral—Senate and House of Rep.
Current Head of State: President Muhammadu Buhari
Head of Government: President Muhammadu Buhari
Current Ruling Party: All Progressives Congress
Major Political Parties: People’s Democratic Party (PDP)
All Nigeria People’s Party (ANPP), Action Congress (AC)
No Cross Cutting Cleavages
◦ Ethnic, Regional, and Religious
No National Identity!
 Nigeria is only 50 years old
 Country created because of colonialism
 Parliamentary system failed…why?
 Presidential system is working…why?
Nigeria is a megastate
Its importance is derived from its large
population, oil reserves, and centrality
to the study of Africa
Nigeria embodies the much of the
variety of African political experience.
Nigeria embodies of the variety of
African political experience.
◦ varied heritage
◦ colonial rule
◦ Achievement of independence
◦ Political parties = ethnic cleavages
◦ Social welfare state/responsibility
◦ Pattern of violence and military
Provides useful insights into the challenges
of developing nations
 Major challenges facing Nigeria
◦ Maintaining the balance of civil/military
◦ Managing ethnic diversity
◦ Transitioning from autocratic/military rule to
◦ Exploiting natural resources for public good
◦ Determining role of religion in politics
Central (West) Both
South (East
Ethnic Identity
◦ Hausa-Fulani
Mostly northern half of Nigeria
Predominately Muslim
Legacy of emirates
Indirect colonial rule
Subsistence farming, rural, generally undeveloped villages
Southwestern Nigeria
Lagos—former capital
Oba and lineage chiefs and the British
Fragmenting effect of multiple ethnic identities
Southeastern part of Nigeria—OIL RICH REGION (tried to secede)
Predominantly Christian.
Responsive to western culture—Western educated
Developed for market agriculture
◦ Yoruba
◦ Igbo (lbo)
The importance of ethnicity, religion, and
region in the political life of Nigerians
cannot be underestimated.
Most contentious political issues
influence and/or are influenced by these
three identities.
Biafran Civil War 1967-1970
◦ Explicit ethnic overtones
◦ Eastern Igbo attempted to secede from the
Modern political culture characterized
by ethnic diversity and conflict,
corruption, and politically active
◦ Patron-Clientelism (prebendalism)
◦ State control yet rich civil society
◦ Tension between modernity and tradition
◦ Religious conflict
◦ Ethnic diversity
◦ Geographic influences
Nigerian Nationalism
◦ Three major sources
 Freed slaves from N.A. others of African
descent from the Caribbean
 Nigerians who fought for the British in
 Frustration with lack of recognition for service
 Nigerians who studied in U.K. and U.S.
 Today: comes from military
Democratic Norms and Values
◦ Alternated between democratic and
military rule
◦ Had both parliamentary and presidential
◦ Maintaining stable democracy is challenge
Democratic Norms and Values
◦ Cycle of Rule:
1. Democracy
2. Military rule with promise to return to
3. Majority party would pass policies very
easily and “funnel” resources of the state
to its own ethnic group.
◦ The Presidential system has been somewhat
more successful b/c of separation of
Political Role of Women
◦ Position of women varies immensely
◦ Igbo and Yoruba allow women to hold jobs
and elected office.
◦ Hausa-Fulani restrict role of women (Islam)
and have low rates of literacy and education
and jobs
◦ In general Nigerian women vote in similar
numbers as men but are underrepresented
in government.
◦ Ethnic/Religious Tensions
◦ Civil/Military Relations
◦ Regional Instability
◦ Corruption
◦ Financial transparency
◦ Poverty alleviation
◦ Quality health care
◦ Education
◦ Oil extraction
Key Transition Year of1999:
◦ Nigeria returned to formal civilian rule when
Olusegun Obasanjo was elected president.
Test of Current Government:
◦ How can a potentially wealthy country fail to
provide basic human needs, education, potable
water, reliable transportation and
communications, and engage in politics without
$ 1B a week from oil…. Yet Still ranked as
one of the poorest and most corrupt
countries in the world
◦ Malaria is a disease that affects most Nigerians
◦ HIV/AIDS: Pull on economy
Population Growth
◦ 45% of Nigeria is under 15 years of age.
◦ Children considered a valuable resource in
agricultural societies
◦ Population is growing rapidly = negative impact
on econimic growth
◦ Shifting from rural to urban = smaller portion of
labor force available for food production = drop
in food production per capita
◦ Quickly becoming urban society
◦ Urban infrastructure is strained as a result
◦ The curse of oil!
◦ Nigeria has relied on oil to finance imports and large scale
development projects, thus fluctuations in markets control
the ability of Nigeria to pay its debts
◦ This has caused high rates of inflation
◦ The location of the oil and the distribution of benefits have
had political consequences, most notably in Biafra
◦ Biafra
 Igbo population frustrated with central government for
not distributing a greater share of oil wealth-thus their
attempt to secede
 Oil was main cause for Biafran Civil War 1967-1970
Dist. Natural resources: Political Effects
◦ Eastern region of country holds oil reserves
◦ National government view: national resource
◦ Eastern citizens (Igbo) have yet reap full benefits of their
◦ Individuals who own oil in east tend to be non-Igbo minorities
◦ Environmental degradation: east pays price while handing
over most of the benefits.
◦ MEND (Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta)
The International Environment
◦ Biggest problem: debt it owes Western creditors
◦ Government spends a high percentage of national budget
repaying debt—at the expense of social programs.
Northerners have dominated the leadership
of the country under military and civilian
Military power
◦ Educated Igbo's have held leadership positions
Civil service
No recruitment of “strangers”
Federal character of appointments of
military personnel
Ethnic politics still dominate
◦ Constitution of 1999
 Calls for independently elected president
 Dual chamber of national assembly at the federal level
 3 Senators from each of 36 states, plus one from
 Representatives determined by population
 All legislators elected to four year terms
 Nigerian pluralism; lack of trust by subcultures
 No institutional structure can overcome this
Executive branch of government has been
the most powerful
Current system is a federal system closely
modeled after the U.S. presidential system
Popularly elected to four-year term with maximum of
two terms
Head of Government
Commander-in-Chief of armed forces
Head of State
Appoints government ministers (confirmed by
Senate)—must come from all 36 states
President and ministers not allowed to serve in
National Assembly
National Assembly
◦ Bicameral with Senate and House of
◦ Popularly Elected
◦ All bills must pass both houses and be signed by
◦ Senate
 109 members: 3 from each state and one from
◦ House of Representatives
 360 members
◦ Judiciary: Constitution of 1999
 Supreme Court
 Court of Appeal
 State and Federal High Courts
 Ten northern states maintain shari’a
law courts
 Overlapping system of judiciary has
caused conflict
Governor who is popularly elected
State House of Assembly
◦ Unicameral
◦ Comprised of popularly elected
representatives from local government
You cannot study Nigerian politics
without recognizing the importance
of the military in all aspects of
political life.
Well disciplined, organized, with the
ability to make decisions efficiently
and effectively
One of only sources of national
As with many “developing nations”, the
bureaucracy has been the source of
employment for large numbers of people
not engaged in trade or agriculture.
Major corruption, lack of accountability, and
massive cash from oil production.
People’s Democratic Party (PDP)
◦ Hausa-Fulani and North
◦ Obasanjo and Umar Musa Yar’adua
All Nigeria People’s Party (ANPP) 2003
◦ Formally the All People’s Party APP 1999
◦ Igbo and East/Southeast
◦ Main opposition party
Action Congress (AC)
◦ Yoruba and West/Southwest
1975 Elections controlled by Federal Elections
Commission (FEDECO)
All parties must register with FEDECO
“Federal Character” of parties
Parties had to have at least two-thirds of all states
to be able to run candidates
Obasanjo was elected under this system PDP
◦ PDP: People’s Democratic Party
◦ As a northerner and a Hausa, he is a Christian and his candidacy
received broad popular support
Great range in activity
◦ Voting
◦ Civil war
◦ Violence; thugs
Without census data hard to assess
Mobilization of patron-client networks
key to victory
Standard of living has not improved in
recent years
Oil revenue has had little impact on GDP
Nigeria spends large portion of budget on
Increased number of children in schools
Poor performance on providing basic health care
Income gap between rich and poor increased
“national cake”: Federal gov. spends between twothirds three fourths
Dealing with Debt
◦ Borrowed heavily from foreign banks in 1970s
◦ High interested caused debt trap
◦ World Bank and IMF restructured much of the
◦ Spending to repay debt highest item in annual
◦ The problem of how to deal with debt is one of
highest items of priority
The Census Issue
◦ Major source of political conflict!...that’s right
counting people
◦ More People = More Federal Money
◦ This is because each ethnic group fears that the
count will inaccurately reflect larger opposing
groups and that the state’s resources will be
directed accordingly
◦ Also, in a country where federal subsidies make
up the lion’s share of budgetary allocations at all
levels, the distribution of population directly
effects the distribution of resources.
Oil crisis
Crisis in Nigeria ( oil)
Havoc in Nigeria
Riots and Religion