Military Nature and Its Implication on the Development of the State. Case of Nigeria
|Theoretical assumptions and explanation of military coup d’état||4|
|Impacts of military on development during the military rule||8|
|Impacts of military on development during the civilian rule||11|
One of the most widespread and significant features of developing countries, especially the ones in Africa, are frequent changes of regime or overtaking the power by military coup d’état. This consequently leads to the necessity to look at it more detailed- why it happens so often and mainly- what are the main impacts of the military nature of the state on its development. One of such cases is Nigeria, which will be studied in this research paper.
Studying Nigeria, there are a lot of complicated issues which affect its development- dependence on oil export and revenue; economic relations, characterized by patrimonialism and clientelism and therefore also high levels of corruption; complicated ethnic relations within the state as Nigeria is federal state with a lot of small ethnic groups and three main and mutually rebellious ones (Hausa, Yoruba and Igbo); and the intricate military nature of the state since its independence, characterized with numerous coups and counter-coups. All of these issues are inseparable and mutually involved. In this essay main focus will be placed on the last one- militarism in Nigeria and its impacts on development and other above mentioned issues. Main reason of that is that this is connected with highest levels of state affairs, the whole regime, which more or less determines all the rest issues and relations within the state; hence we may conclude that this is the general one to start studying development issues of Nigeria.
Nigeria is also very interesting case to study. It gained its independence from its former colonizer- United Kingdom in 1960 and since then has experienced only few moments of democracy. However- as A.Thomson (2004: 73) states “Nigeria ranks as one of Africa’s more developed states, having benefited of its oil reserves. Ongoing conflicts of interest between various social groups, however, have hindered further political and economic development. Much of this conflict has encouraged political mobilization along ethnic lines”. Along these ethnic lines occurred also military mobilization- most of the rulers and leaders of coups were from Northern part of Nigeria and represented one of the major ethnic groups- Hausa. Although Nigeria is seen as one of successful in its development, comparing to other African states, coercion and Northern military rule have affected it negatively and hence have encumbered larger progress and creation of substantive democracy. It has enforced ethnic strives and led to misuse of resources and economics, delaying democracy even in its formal sense and it has strongly affected the state and development also during the periods of civilian rule. All of this will be described in later parts right after comprehending what are the military coup d’état in Africa.
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