Nigeria : An Introduction To The Politics, Economy And .

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NORDISKA;.\FRIKAINSTl.'q-')7- 21UPPSALAOlav StokkeNIGERIAAn Introduction to the Politics, Economyand Social Setting of Modern NigeriaThe Scandinavian Institute of African StudiesUppsala 1970

Olav StokkeNIGERIAAn Introduction to the Politics, Economyand Social Setting of Modern NigeriaThe Scandinavian Institute of African StudiesUppsala 1970

The Scandinavian Institute of African Studies has served atUppsala since 1962 as a Scandinavian documentation and researchcentre on African affairs. The views expressed in its publications are entirely those of the authors and do not necessarilyreflect the views of the Institute. Nordiska Afrikainstitutet & Olav StokkeAll rights reservedPrinted in Sweden bySöderström & Finn, Uppsala 19701 I f\'cif1/0&O


Conremporary Politics41CONSTITUTIONAL CRISES41The AG split in 1962 and the subsequent regionalcrisisThe Federal elections of December, 1964The regional elections in Western Nigeria inOctober 1965THE MILITARY COUPS OF 1966The January coupThe July coupDEVELOPMENTS LEADING TO THE SECESSION OF THE EASTERNREGIONThe massacres in Northern Nigeria and the exodusof Ibos to the Eastern RegionThe Eastern Region strategy for autonomyTHE CIVIL WARThe military conflictThe conflict at the diplomatic levelThe humanitarian strategyTHE FOREIGN-POLICY ORIENTATIONS OF NIGERIAThe Nigerian approach to Pan-AfricanismNigeria and the United NationsPro-western non-alignmentPost-war perspectivesThe Nigerian Economy and the Natural ResourcesGENERAL DEVELOPMENT OF THE NIGERIAN ECONOMYDEVELOPMENT PLANSAGRICULTURE, FORESTRY AND FISHERlESMINING, FUEL AND POWERINDUSTRYCOMMUNICATIONSMarketing Boards, Co-operatives and Trade UnionsMARKETING BOARDSTHE CD-OPERATIVE MOVEMENTTRADE 879091919393EducationHealthThe Nordie Countries and4199103Nigeria105Seleeted List of Literarurelll,List of Abbreviations123Appendix125

PREFACEThis volume on Nigeria appears in a series of books on variousAfrican countries that the Scandinavian Institute of AfricanStudies has published over the last years (in Swedish andEnglish). Earlier titles include Tunisia, Angola,Mo ambiqueand Namibia. The present volume is written by OlavStokke, former ly of The Norwegian Institute of InternationalAffairs. Stokke has published extensively on WestAfrican problems and is since 1969 Associate Research Directorof the Institute.Uppsala, June 15, 1970Carl Gösta WidstrandDirector

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9IntroducrionDr. Nnamdi Azikiwe, the first President of the Federation ofNigeria, once stated that Africa should seek unity in diversityand diversity in uni ty. Thus, in one sentence this veteran ofthe nationalist struggle in Nigeria and in Africa at large andthe leading statesman of by far the most populous country ofAfrica, summed up his experience of both Nigerian and Africanpolitics. His experience of Nigerian politics alone providedhim with an ample background for appraising many of the problemswhich have bedevilled African relations. The population ofNigeria was approximately one-fifth of Africa's total population; it consisted of a multitude of ethnic groups living intheir own territories, differing from each other in language,traditionalsocial and political structure, /ayof life andother culturai traits, and having their own separate histories.Add to this the latent sources of conflict at the structurallevel, stemming from uneven development between the differentregions /ithregard to culturai values, economic developmentand western education; claims for separate status along culturaior linguistic borders; the more general problem of disparitybetween the available resources and the growing expectations;and the competition at the elite level among a growing numberof qualified people for a limited number of positions, a competition that in the Nigeria of the fifties and the six ties hadovertones of ethnic rivalry--then you have Nigeria's predicament in a nutshell, and Africa's as weIl.In its approach to African co-operation during the decisiveyears of the early sixties, Nigeria offered the solutionsarrived at on the national level--a functionalist approach,starting in a modest way with solutions at practical levels andwith the ultimate aim of African unity somewhat blurred. Thisapproach was not so easy to defend, and definitely less exciting,than the rival approach, defended at that time impatiently andimaginatively by the Government of Ghana under KI·/arne Nkrumah--to create political unity first and then the rest 1'lOuldfollow--with a detailed plan for both the institutionai and theideological and political set-up of a present time goal of

10African unity. The Organization of African Uni t y was, however,ultimately established more or less according to the Nigerianconcept--and even these more limited aspirations for continentalco-operation have so far proved too optimistic confronted withthe everyday life of political Africa.The developments in Nigeria have a cnnsiderable bearing uponthe developments in Africa at large, and upon Africa's standingin world politics, its vitality and its ability to handlepressing problems, both within Africa itself and in connectionwith world affairs generally. This fact has been illuminatedduring the recent crisis in Nigeria and will probably haverepercussions in the future, even though the armed conflict isnowended.

11Early HistoryThe Nigeria of today has an area of 356,669 sq. miles; it isapproximately as large as Denmark, Iceland, Norway, Sweden andthe Netherlands put together. The climate, natural resourcesand vegetation vary from one area to another. Geographersdistinguish between three principal zones of vegetation: theswamp forests of the coast belt, the high forests of the humidsouth and the savannahs of the subhumid Middle Belt and thenorth. Such differences have an effect on the living conditionsof the peoples in the various areas and at the same timeconstitute natural barriers that were not easily penetrated byexpansionist peoples at various stages of Nigeria's precolonialhistory.The history of the interior of West Africa is the history ofthe movement of different peoples and a constant process offusion between them. In the ninth and tenth centuries theincoming movement of peoples in to Nigeria seems to have beenpart of the upheaval caused by the rise of Islam in the MiddleEast--a development that speeded up migrations that were alreadytaking place through the Nile Valley into northern and westernAfrica. There seems from this time on to have been a two-waytraffic of mutual influence in terms of trade, education,religions and ideas between several mediaeval empires in westernSudan, many of which seem to have achieved a high degree ofpolitical, economic and culturai development--the Ghana, Melleand .3onghai kingdoms being the most fanlOus-and the statesalong the coast of North Africa and the Middle East.THE MUSLIM NORTHThe people of Bornu in the northeastern corner of Nigeria seemto have been in the first wave of the movement from the northerncoast through Egypt, bringing along with them trade, Islam andnew ideas. To the west of Bornu were the seven Babe states-Daura, Kano, Zauzau, Gobir, Katsina, Rano and Biram-established shortly af ter Bornu, in the tenth century. elose

12co-operation existed between these seven states, each of thembeing assigned an appropriate function. Gobir to the west wasobliged to provide defence against the empire of Ghana and laterSonghai. Kano and Rano were the main producing states, especiallyiron and cotton. Katsina and Daura were trading states. Zauzau(Zaria) to the south provided slaves. Other lesser kingdoms ofthis region were Kebbi, Nupe, Gwari, Yelwa, Ilorin, Zamfara andKwarafara.During the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, the Habe statesseem to have corae within the sphere of influence of the kingdomof Kanem-Bornu, the dominant state of central Sudan. During thefollowing century Islam was introduced. Shortly afterwardsFulani tribesmen migrating from the west were welcomed as al liesby the kings of the Habe states. Some of the Fulani denizensgave up their nomadic life and settled permanent ly in the Habetowns and were integrated. The Habe states had a fairly highdegree of centralized government, and had at an early stagedeveloped a confederal type of co-operation among themselves.A new political system was created in the north during the firsthalf of the nineteenth century. In 1804 Shehu Usuman dan Fodio,the learned head of aFulani clan and a devoted puritan Moslem,rebelled against the persecution of Muslims by the King of Gobir,rallied devout Muslims, especially among the settled Fulani, andproclaimed a ihhad (a holy war) against the Habe rulers. Duringthe following years Usuman dan Fodio and his followers subduedboth pagan and Islamic cornmunities in the vlhole of Hausaland andbeyond, and established a new system of government. He dividedhis secular empire between his son, the Sultan of Sokoto, andhis brother, the Emir of Gwandu, the two becoming the overlordsof a loosely knit system of vassal states ruled by emirs withextensive autonomy in local affairs. The new political systemsin the north were characterized in the first place by theircentralized and hierarchical structure even though the variousemirs and other rulers at the state level enjoyed a largedegree of autonomy in local affairs. Emirate rule in Hausalandwas, as elsewhere, theocratic, involving the fusion of politicaland religious authority. It was also dynastic, the emirs, as a

13rule, being elected by defined electors from among royaldynasties. The emirs ruled through aristocracies of birth andrank, and most of the higher offices were held by men of noblebirth, even though trusted clients might be co-opted into thebureaucracy for the services they had rendered.The raditionalforms of government in Northern Nigeria outsideHausaland varied widely, though many areas of the predominantlypagan Middle Belt were to varying extents integrated into theadministrative superstructure of the northern emirates. Theinstitutions of traditional local government in the Kanuri areaof Bornu and the Nupe area were similar to the emirates ofHausaland. In the Middle Belt the system of traditional government varied from divine kingdoms (the 19a1a and the Jukun,amongst others) to the non-centralized communities of Tivland.The Fulani expansion was confronted with successful militaryresistance in the northeast (Bornu) and from the Yoruba kingdomsin the southwest. The high forests of the southeast proved to benatural barriers against penetration by the Fulani cavalry.Parts of the Middle Belt constituted a buffer zone between theFulani empire and the Yoruba kingdoms to the south. The nonMuslimcommunities in this area were heavily taxed by theslave-raiding of the Fulani rulers.TRADITIONAL POLITICAL SYSTEMS OF SOUTHERN NIGERIAThe prestige of the Yoruba kingdoms was at its highest at theend of the seventeenth century, but long before that timeYorubaland was politically weIl organized. According to a tradition reviewed during the 19405 and 19505, the origin of theYorubas was a dei ty, the Oduduwa, v/hich settled at lfe. Theprincipal royal families of Yorubaland (seven) were founded bythe grandsons of the Oduduwa. The kings (the Obas) were therefore sacred; the pre-eminent spiritual Oba was the Oni of lfeand the politicallymost powerful was the Alafin of Oyo. Inthe years af ter 1800, the Yorubas were split into numerouskingdoms of various sizes, v/hich got involved in wars among

14themselves and were at the same time under pressure from theoutside--from the Fulanis of the north and from Dahomey to thewest. These city-kingdoms were high ly autonomous, though therewas a hierarchy among the royal families and military allianceswere established. These political systems could be classifiedas constitutional monarchies, the power of the Obas beingsubject to consent from other institutions. The governmentswere centralized, with a high degree of specialization asregarded their functions.Southeast of Yorubaland the kingdom of Benin had a separatehistory, though the royal dynasty of Benin was derived from theYoruba dynasty of lfe. The Benin kingdom was a society with ahierarchical elite structure, a centralized administration anda strong army and military traditions. During the slave-tradeera this kingdom was a centre of slave-raiding. lts traditionalpolitical institutions differed from those of the Yoruba-kingdoms. The power of the sacred Oba of Benin was absolute; theprincipal chiefs might influence the Oba but had no traditionalrights of opposition.The political organizations of the communities in the southeastof Nigeria differed. Broadly speaking, the structures were moredecentralized than in the political systems to the north andsouthwest, and the polity was more egalitarian.

15Developmems DuringtheColonialEraAs a political entity, Nigeria is a relatively young state,being, like most African countries today, in the first place aproduct of the Berlin Congress of 1884-85 and the policies andactivities of European colonial powers during the two or threedecades befor e and af ter that congress.Formally, Nigeria became one administrative unit in 1914; realunity was first achieved several decades later. Even its namewas coined in this century and has a "colonial" flavour; itsfirst occurrence is attributed to an article in The Times byFlora Shaw, the wife of Nigeria's first Governor-General, LordLugard.THE COLONIZATION AND THE ADMINISTRATIVE SET-UPThe colonization of Nigeria by the British started as earlyas1861-62, when the Crown Colony of Lagos was established. Britishpenetration in the fol1owing years was fairly modest, beingrestricted to the coastal areas. Af ter the Berlin Congress of1884-85 the coastal areas were named the Oil Rivers Protectorate.This protectorate was extended in 1893 and re-named the NigerCoast Protectorate. The Protectorate of Southern Nigeria wasestablished in 1900, now under the Colonial Office. When Lagoswas amalgamated in 1906, the name was changed to the Colony andProtectorate of Southern Nigeria. The Protectorate of NorthernNigeria was established af ter Lugard had subdued the northernemirates at the turn of the century. In 1914 the two protectorates were formal1y amalgamated, the office of the GovernorGeneralbeing the primary common institution. The Crown Colonyof Lagos, however, vlas given a separate status.In fact, the two protectorates were administered as two separateentities. The southern protectorate was divided administrativelyinto three groups of provinces. These were later on unitedadministratively, with the headquarters first in Lagos and latertransferred to Enugu. In 1939 this unit was split into two,

16the Niger River constituting the dividinq line.When the second world war started, Nigeria was dividedadministrative ly into four units, the colony and the northern,eastern and western groups of provinces. Due to war conditions,the central administration situated in Lagos had to delegatepowers to the administrative sub-centres in Kaduna (north),Enugu (east) and Ibadan (west)--a practice that further extendedthe established division.Af ter the war this practice was formalized in the RichardsConstitution of 1946, which in fact created a federal type ofadministrative structure, with political powers ves ted in acentral authority and three regional authorities--in the north,the east and the west. The division of political powers betweenthe federal centre and the regional centres was developedfurther during the Macpherson Constitution of 1951, the LytteItonConstitution of 1954 and the constitutional revisions of 1957and 1958 before independence--in the fifties with broad Nigerianparticipation in the constitution-making process.At least two other characteristics of the brief colonial periodare worth special mention, because of their impact on genuineNigerian politics during the 15 years before independence andaf ter.INDIRECT AND DIRECT RULELord Lugard developed the doctrine of indirect rule as a convenient and economically favourable form of government. Indirectrule meant that the colonial power ruled through the establishedtraditional governments. In the ca se of the northern emiratesthis meant,that the British deprived the emirs oftheir traditional de jure authority and left them vlith a de factocontroI that was ultimately based on the British monopol y offorces.This form of government worked weIl in the strong and high ly

17centralized emirates of northern Nigeria. Here the traditionalgoverning elite had for a long time exerted continuousadministrative and judicial controi on a territorial basisthrough formal governmental institutions, had a monopoly ofmilitary power and had even developed a system of effectivetaxation. In these areas the colonial administration thus tendedto cQnsolidate the power positions of the traditional politicaland religious elites and their system of government. It alsotended to strengthen the isolationist tendencies in most localcommunities.Indirect rule did not turn out so successfully elsewhere inNigeria. The centralized traditional elites of Yorubaland p:covided a fair ly good basis for this form of government in thesouthwest. In many areas of the Middle Belt and for manysocieties in the east, however, it did not work, and thecolonial power had to apply a direct-rule system of colonialadministration, using its own administrative set--up. Thisdifference of colonial administration between the varions partsand communities of Nigeria further extended the existinC{ culturaiand political gaps.UNEVEN DEVELOPMENTThese differences in social and political organization. religion,culturai values. v1ay of life and other traits that had existedbetween the various societies 70 years ago, when they were firstunited by an outside power, had their background in differentliving conditions, in different traditions and origins, and indifferences with regard to the stimuli received through contactsv1ith the outside world. The north had for longandeconomic connections across the Sahara and with the predominantlyMuslim empires of western Sudan, whereas the south had, from theseventeenth century on, had its primary contact"s with the outside world through European traders (slaves being the mainexport) and later on also through Christian missionaries.These differences were reinforced by other factors under colonial

18rule, the most important being the uneven developments betweenthe north and the south with regard to social and economicprogress, western education and political development. Westerneducation proved to be the most crucial factor--the developmentsin the other sectors were to a large ex tent correlated with thiskey factor. The missionary school s had a

This volume on Nigeria appears in a series of books on various African countries that the Scandinavian Institute of African Studies has published over the last years (in Swedish and English). Earlier titles include Tunisia, Angola, Mo~ambique an