Opposition Parties and Democratization in Nigeria, 2007-2013: A Diagnostic Assessment (Review Completed - Accepted)
Politics is a struggle of contending ideological viewpoints for the allocation and distribution of resources. Political parties are at the center of politics as modern democracy is unthinkable in the absence of viable political parties and the interplay of party politics that characterize the polity. This paper therefore examines the role of opposition political parties in political re-engineering of Nigerian state and the impact of absence of internal democracy on the electoral performance of the opposition parties in Nigeria. An attempt is also made to analyze the recent merger between the opposition political parties. The study adopts qualitative method of data gathering and uses theory of the post-colonial state. Hence, this paper argues that the opposition parties’ inability to offer itself as alternative government in Nigeria today lies in their weak institutionalization and ideology drought, which results in an increasing disconnect between citizens and their elected leaders, and a decline in political activism. It recommends that the formation and merger of future opposition political parties should follow a micro natural evolution and patriotic commitment; and that opposition politics in the context of inter party relations in Nigeria needs a total overhaul through proactive and agenda setting governance policy engagement and commitments.
A Brain Child of External Forces or Internal Crisis: The Formation and Rise of the Movement for Democratic Change in Zimbabwe, 1999-2013 (Review Completed - Accepted)
The article is mainly concerned about analyzing the factors behind the formation and rise of MDC
in Zimbabwe body politic. Some scholars and ZANU-PF political elite view MDC as a foreign
project sponsored by the Americans and the British. Therefore, they largely believe that MDC is a
party without African interests at heart. Other scholars believed that MDC is simply an internal
creation that was consummated as a result of ZANU-PF’s complete failure in regard to economic
management and governance crisis. However, in the end MDC was as a result of both internal and
external factors. Among the factors considered in this paper they range from political, economic,
social as well as international forces. However, it is the contention of this paper that the democratic
and human rights abuses by the state as well as internal economic crisis in Zimbabwe contributed
much to the emergence and rise of MDC in Zimbabwe
DEMOCRACY AND RESOURCE CONFLICT RESOLUTION: MAKING A CASE FOR THE DEMOCRATIC SOLUTION TO THE NIGER DELTA CRISIS (Published)
It is an incontrovertible fact that the Niger Delta is a region of great and troubling paradox – it is a location of immense wealth as well as inhuman poverty, misery and hardship. This vexed situation has over the years engendered volatile protests and struggles against perceived injustice, disinheritance, marginalization and even exclusion perpetrated against the region by agents of the Nigerian State. As a result, the region has become a veritable laboratory for all sorts of interventionist and conflict resolution mechanisms. All these including the present amnesty program are woefully inadequate to bring about durable peace to the region because they are all devoid of the much needed democratic ingredients. It is against this back drop that the paper is advocating a democratic solution to the Nigerian crisis located in the Niger Delta region. Emphasis here is given to consociational model of democracy that takes into consideration the rights of the ethnic minorities of the region to participatory decision making and governance. Our conclusion is that for Nigeria to experience sustainable peace in the economy jewel of the nation, genuine and determined effort should be made to initiate and institute robust democratic decision making processes and structures in the region as well as the Nigerian nation.
Keywords: Amnesty Program, Consociational Democracy, Democracy, Illiberal, Marginalisation, Niger Delta Crisis, Participatory Governance, Resource Conflict Resolution, Undemocratic Interventionist Mechanisms
POLITICAL PARTIES AND DEMOCRATIC CONSOLIDATION IN NIGERIA’S FOURTH REPUBLIC (Review Completed - Accepted)
Political parties play very critical roles in democratization of any nation. Central to the successes and failures of electoral politics is the cardinal and strategic functions of this all important and an integral organ of democratization which is core to its development. The dawn of the Nigerian fourth republic has witnessed renewed and sustained activities of political parties which is the most complex and critical institutions of democracy but undoubtedly has either shaped or stagnated the deepening and consolidation of democracy. With heavy reliance on secondary data supported by analytical approach, the paper x-rayed the role of political parties in the democratic consolidation of Nigeria’s Fourth Republic. The climax of the analysis is the identified challenges plaguing democratic consolidation since the commencement of the fourth republic i.e.: Lack of institutionalization and personalization of political parties; Godfatherism; Absence of internal democracy within the political parties and incessant party/political violence. The party system in Nigeria is still weak and vulnerable with no visible signs of adding value to the democratic consolidation. It is recommended that issues of organizational capacity, effective leadership, internal democracy, discipline, institutionalization and personalization, ideological platforms of mobilization and linkage to civil society and the masses should be addressed
The judiciary has come under a severe criticism in recent times due to its untimely disposal of electoral case in free and fair manner. Marxist theoretical perspective is hereby adopted to ascertain the problem under consideration. The need for the theory arose because the judiciary with its powers is required by the capitalist to enforce unequal distribution of social and material rewards in order to preserve their position to oppress less privileged class in the society. It was discovered that the capitalist class in Nigeria normally muster financial resources not just to perpetuate electoral fraud but also bribe their way in the election petition tribunal which aim at correcting the abnormality in the electoral system thereby denying the masses access to justice in Nigeria. It was recommended that various punishments and sanctions should be awarded to erring judges who indulge in corrupt practices, such punishment like death sentence, dismissal from service, public humiliation by sending them to prisons to serve jail term. On the side of politicians who bribe judges to see their way through, they should equally trial and convict them for bribing public officers. Also they should be disqualified from whatever political position they are contesting for, this will help in reducing the corruption in the judiciary that does not allow Nigerian democracy to grow.
The objective of this paper is to find out the extent democracy and the rule of law has influenced good governance in Nigeria. The Political Economy approach, based on the Marxian concept of the dialectical materialism of the society, is adopted as the framework of analysis. Secondary data, generated through documents reading, were used for the analysis. Our findings indicate that in principle, democracy and the rule of law are elaborately provided in Nigeria, but in practice, good governance still eludes the country. Corruption, poverty, ignorance, diseases, inflation, declining productivity, maladministration, dictatorship, ethnicity and other primordial factors, as well as prevalent social vices are the road mines to good governance in Nigeria. Equitable distribution of resources, provision of qualitative education, economic restructuring of the society, freedom of the press and political reforms, among other recommendations, are fundamental for the enthronement of functional democracy and the rule of law for good governance in Nigeria.
The Rule of Law, Democracy and Good Governance in Nigeria (Review Completed - Accepted)
The objective of this paper is to find out the extent democracy and the rule of law has influenced good governance in Nigeria. The Political Economy approach, based on the Marxian concept of the dialectical materialism of the society, is adopted as the framework of analysis. Secondary data, generated through documents reading, were used for the analysis. Our findings indicate that in principle, democracy and the rule of law are elaborately provided in Nigeria, but in practice, good governance still eludes the country. Corruption, poverty, ignorance, diseases, inflation, declining productivity, maladministration, dictatorship, ethnicity and other primordial factors, as well as prevalent social vices are the road mines to good governance in Nigeria. Equitable distribution of resources, provision of qualitative education, economic restructuring of the society, freedom of the press and political reforms, among other recommendations, are fundamental for the enthronement of functional democracy and the rule of law for good governance in Nigeria
The struggle for cultural supremacy is not only a fact of history but also an observable phenomenon of social existence. Perhaps, the frenzied defence of cultural identity is second only to the expression of territorial nationalism. Contemporary cultures of which Islam is a resilient part are engaged in a ceaseless war of survival. Following the 9/11 attack on the World Trade Centre in New York, Islam has come under intense scrutiny. What has followed is a feverish commitment to the obliteration of Islamic values at home and abroad and the intensification of the scheme to enthrone western culture. This raises many legal, constitutional and sociological questions as well as questions relating to the place of Islamic culture both on the international arena and within the Nigerian jurisdiction. The paper is dedicated both to defining the place of Islamic culture vis-a-vis freedom of conscience and the constitutional safeguards in place against the prejudices that confront Islamic civilisation.
Legislative-Executive Dichotomy In The Public Policy Process: A Perspective on Nigeria’s Fourth Republic (Published)
The Fourth Republic will perhaps go down in recorded history as the most durable and eventful in Nigeria’s political and constitutional development. In it, democracy has endured for about a decade and a half. This development has offered the needed impetus to rethink the task of nation building that started over fifty two years ago. In specific terms, thirteen years of unbroken civil rule is significant to the extent that it provides opportunity to reconstruct the political system along strong democratic principles anchored on a durable and inclusive constitutional framework. This paper offers a perspective on the public policy process in the light of legislative-executive dichotomy. Drawing extensively from literature on the subject matter, and against the backdrop of extant provisions of the 1999 constitution, the paper observes that, both actors in the governance project are lacking in sincere commitment to constitutional provisions and settled principles of the law. It concludes that without prejudice to the constitutional separation of powers and the attendant checks and balances, a permissible plank of cooperation and interdependence creates a stable policy environment to promote the common good of all. A number of recommendations are offered, some of which include; an urgent call to promote a regime of constitutionalism, the institutionalisation of legislative activism, and the need for government to pledge a renewed commitment to fight corruption that has become a systemic menace.