Ethnic and Religious Conflict in Nigeria

3148 Words13 Pages
Analysis of the challenges of religion and ethnicity on political stability in Nigeria’s fourth republic (1999-2011)
Background to the Study
Basically, Nigeria is a plural society and heterogeneous in virtually all the facet of life. The custom and tradition of Nigerians is so diverse to the extent that Nigeria as a country is now confronted with the problem of religion and ethnicity towards their political stability.
The origin and history of ethnic conflict (societal wars and violence) can be traced from eternal (internal) state rivalry to external (physical). And its root cause is not very far from power competition and decision making over economic resources and other important human factor, like position. The
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This article is focused on the historical incidents of ethnic conflicts in within Nigeria societies, the cause of the conflicts and perhaps, the government actions towards ethnic conflict in the country. In conclusion, this paper will explore into decision-making (by the elites and those in authority) process has contributed immensely in generating the syndromes of conflict in the said state.
The Nigerian political situation has witnessed more breaking of heads, than counting them. In fact, even when it has been convenient for heads to be counted, the outcome has always been the breaking of heads instead. Conflict in Nigeria is so intense because of lack of democratic behaviour. The head of the individual in the democratic context signifies citizenship. So when heads are broken in the Nigerian political community, the issue in respect of broken heads is citizenship. If conflict in Nigeria means the absence of democratic behaviour, it follows, therefore, that conflict in Nigeria is interwoven with the absence of democratic governance. Gurr (2000): has also shown that the incidence of conflicts at the global level declined in recent years with the deepening of democratisation. Nation-states where conflicts persist are those where what obtains is the democratisation of disempowerment (Ake 1996). Beyond the veneer of elections, the state remains ambushed, privatised, repressive and unpopular. The people who were tantalised by the
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