The efficacy of federalism in a multi-ethnic state: the Nigerian experience

Journal article


Babalola, D. 2015. The efficacy of federalism in a multi-ethnic state: the Nigerian experience. The Journal of Pan African Studies. 8 (2), pp. 74-92.
AuthorsBabalola, D.
Abstract

The continuing debate among social and political commentators over the utility of federalism in a multi-ethnic federation like Nigeria, as well as the unending clamour in some parts of the country for the dissolution of the federal union, make the writing of this article not only timely, but also a worthwhile exercise. The paper, which adopts a historical and descriptive method of analysis, is therefore an attempt to join the discourse on the efficacy of federalism in Nigeria by arguing that the geo-demographic complexity of the Nigerian state and society makes federalism the most appropriate political framework for the country. This is not suggesting that the federal system of government constitutes a panacea to the country’s hydra-headed multiplicity. There is no denying that the system is not working the way it ought to in its current incarnation, but it has lived up to the expectation of the country’s founding fathers in ‘holding together’ the diverse ethnic groups in the country as well as in achieving ‘unity in diversity’. Therefore, our suggestion is that Nigerian political leaders should improve upon the current system and redress the inherent imbalances that have become its features, because history suggests that federalism is Nigeria’s best obtainable option.

KeywordsFederalism; Nigeria; Ethnic groups; Federal character principle
Year2015
JournalThe Journal of Pan African Studies
Journal citation8 (2), pp. 74-92
PublisherThe Journal of Pan African Studies
ISSN1942-6569
Official URLhttps://www.jpanafrican.org/docs/vol8no2/8.2-6-Babalola-Final.pdf
Publication dates
OnlineJul 2015
Publication process dates
Deposited07 May 2020
Accepted author manuscript
Permalink -

https://repository.canterbury.ac.uk/item/8v2zq/the-efficacy-of-federalism-in-a-multi-ethnic-state-the-nigerian-experience

Download files

Accepted author manuscript

  • 3
    total views
  • 0
    total downloads
  • 3
    views this month
  • 0
    downloads this month

Export as

Related outputs

The political economy of federalism in Nigeria
Babalola, D. 2019. The political economy of federalism in Nigeria. Palgrave Macmillam.
Resource abundance and the dilemma of fiscal federalism in Nigeria
Babalola, D. and Okafor, O. 2019. Resource abundance and the dilemma of fiscal federalism in Nigeria . Journal of African Political Economy and Development. 4 (1), pp. 3-21.
New clamour for “restructuring” in Nigeria: elite politics, contradictions, and good governance
Babalola, D. and Onapajo, H. 2019. New clamour for “restructuring” in Nigeria: elite politics, contradictions, and good governance. African Studies Quarterly. Volume 18 (Issue 4), pp. 41-56.
Ethnicity, ethnic conflict and the elusive quest for peace in Nigeria
Babalola, D. 2018. Ethnicity, ethnic conflict and the elusive quest for peace in Nigeria. in: Nigeria, a Country Under Siege: Issues of Conflict and its Management in Democratic Nigeria Newcastle Upon Tyne Cambridge Scholars Publishing. pp. 21-46
Contending Issues in Political Parties in Nigeria: The Candidate Selection Process
Babalola, D. and Abba, S. 2017. Contending Issues in Political Parties in Nigeria: The Candidate Selection Process. Journal of Pan African Studies . 11 (1), pp. 118-134.
Youth unemployment and armed insurrection in post-military Nigeria: the contending issues
Babalola, D. and Ayuba, C. 2015. Youth unemployment and armed insurrection in post-military Nigeria: the contending issues. The Journal of Social, Political and Economic Studies . 40 (3), p. 263–288.