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The Enemy Within: Insurgency and the Failure of the Nigerian State

  • J. N. C. Hill
Chapter
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Abstract

There are two parts to Nigeria’s failure. First, the Federal Government does not exercise total control over the whole of the country’s sovereign territory. There are places in the Niger Delta and the north-eastern state of Borno in which Abuja’s writ does not run. Second, the Federal Government does not provide all of its citizens with the security, basic health care, primary education and other public goods that it should. It is failing to protect and promote the flourishing of all Nigerians.

Keywords

Police Officer Armed Force Ordinary People Niger Delta Security Force 
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Notes

  1. 6.
    J.N.C. Hill, Sufism in Northern Nigeria: A Force for Counter Radicalisation? (Carlisle, Pennsylvania: Strategic Studies Institute US Army War College, 2010) and Abimbola Adesoji, The Boko Haram Uprising and Islamic Revivalism in Nigeria, Africa Spectrum, 2010, Vol. 45, No. 2, pp. 98–99.Google Scholar
  2. 23.
    Alamieyeseigha was arrested by the UK’s Metropolitan Police in Sept ember 2005 on charges of money laundering. He fled the country, allegedly by disguising himself as a woman, after he was released on bail. When police officers raided his flat in the Water Gardens district of West London, they found nearly one million pounds in cash in various currencies along with an assortment of other treasures. Indeed so wealthy was Alamieyeseigha, he could afford to forfeit these valuables and his considerable bail bond. Michael Peel, A Swamp Full of Dollars: Pipelines and Paramilitaries at Nigeria’s Oil Frontier (London and New York: I.B. Tauris, 2009), pp. 105–106. On 26 July 2007 he was sentenced to two years in prison by a Nigerian court after pleading guilty to charges of theft and money laundering. He was released almost straight away due to the amount of time he had already served.Google Scholar
  3. 26.
    Michael Watts, ‘Blood Oil: The Anatomy of a Petro-Insurgency in the Niger Delta, Nigeria’, in Andrea Behrends, Stephen P. Reyna and Günther Schlee (eds.), Crude Domination: An Anthropology of Oil (Oxford: Berghahn Books, 2011), p. 61.Google Scholar
  4. 27.
  5. 32.
    Indeed, and as Graf puts it, ‘if the Federal Government did not exactly provide a textbook lesson in how to conduct a war — stories of inefficiency, indiscipline among the ranks, lost opportunities and the like were rampant — it did in some measure demonstrate how a lasting peace could be made.’ William D. Graf, The Nigerian State (London: James Currey, 1988), p. 44. Yet these inefficiencies aside, Gowon did win the war and, in the process, stopped Nigeria from breaking up.Google Scholar
  6. 33.
    Somewhat bizarrely IBB once referred to himself as the ‘Evil Genius.’ Karl Maier, This House Has Fallen: Nigeria in Crisis (London: Penguin Books, 2000), p. 43.Google Scholar
  7. 38.
    Daniel Jordan Smith, A Culture of Corruption: Everyday Deception and Popular Discontent in Nigeria (Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press, 2007), pp. 171–174.Google Scholar
  8. 66.
    Thomas Hylland Eriksen, ‘A Non-Ethnic State for Africa? A Life-World Approach to the Imagining of Communities’, in Paris Yeros (ed.), Ethnicity and Nationalism in Africa: Constructivist Reflections and Contemporary Politics (Basingstoke, Hampshire: Palgrave MacMillan, 1999), p. 56.Google Scholar
  9. 67.

Copyright information

© J.N.C. Hill 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. N. C. Hill
    • 1
  1. 1.King’s College LondonUK

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