Nigerian Federalism and Obasanjo’s Civilian Administration in Nigeria, 1999-2007


Adopting the systems and behavioural theories, this article examines the impact of military ethos and orientation on the principle of true federalism during the Obasanjo’s civilian administration in Nigeria. The paper argues that Obasanjo’s military ethos, orientation and behavior largely led to the distortion of the principle of true federalism during his tenure as Nigeria’s civilian president. Against the backdrop of what is contained in the existing literature which usually focus on the distortion of federalism by military rulers, the present work looks at the issue of distortion of federalism from the perspective of military orientation of civilian leaders who had consciously and unconsciously imbibed military behaviours, norms, attitudes, values and practices as a result of long association with military government. It submits that this trend adversely affected the practice of true federalism, a principle believed by the vast majority of Nigerian people as panacea for stability and peaceful co-existence. Thus, it calls for a proper re-orientation and the alteration of the mind-set of every civilian and all retired military men now in leadership positions in Nigeria to see themselves as civilians rather than military men in order to handle issues of national importance in line with federal rules and democratic principles

Keywords: Civilian Administration, Nigeria, Nigerian Federalism, Obasanjo

Article Review Status: Published

Pages: 21-35 (Download PDF)

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