INTERROGATING THE INVOLVEMENT OF NATIVE GODS IN CONTEMPORARY AFRICAN CONFLICT MANAGEMENT (Published)
Africa is witnessing increasing incidences of direct violence and demonstrated inability of governments to restore enduring peace largely through Western models of conflict resolution that necessitated the interrogation of traditional models with emphasis on the involvement of native gods. The study was descriptive and qualitative that relied on secondary data sources. It found that the Traditional models provided for a Win-Win arrangement relied on collective wisdom of the society while the involvement of native gods compelled compliance with resolution terms for fear of non-compliance. It found that governments largely failed to remain neutral in managing conflicts. Specific cases of successful interventions of native god were the final resolution of Aguleri-Umuleri, Umunebo- Umuokuzu and Okrika conflicts in Nigeria. The study concluded that the relevance of native gods is largely limited to intra-ethnic conflicts while it has been perverted by political elites. The study recommended that governments must pay attention to early warning signal to minimize direct violence and develop strong political will to confront the issues of conflict. Finally, the traditional models concerning the intervention of native gods could be combined with Western models where practicable as it cannot stand alone.