Rethinking Zoning Formula as Political Panacea for Ethnic Conflict and Governance Crisis in Nigeria

T. A. Olaiya, D. O. Apeloko, I. N. Amanchukwu, B. W. Shiyanbade


As a nation of highly diverse ethnic and interest groups, Nigeria’s march towards nationhood has been marked with conflict and dissention not particularly untypical of a plural society. To address this, various measures have been put in place to recognise the rights of individuals according to his/her regional/ethnic background with a view to ensuring that benefits percolates accordingly. This paper examines Nigeria’s political history since pre-independence and the various mechanisms that have been used to instill peace in the country’s political space. The paper reviews these instruments and their challenges within the framework ability to achieve the desired goal of peace and good governance and the subsequent adoption of the zoning formula for key positions as well as rotational presidency. Considering the records of stability of the political system in Nigeria, which the zoning formula and rotational presidency appeared to have engendered since 1999, the study found evidences of improved and strengthened ethnic relations, albeit politically. Consequently, such affirmative political strategy in which the interests of the various sections of the country are factored into the political space has become critical to enhanced ethnic relation in the Nigerian polity.

Keywords: Dissention; Conflict; Zoning; Governance crisis

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ISSN (Paper)2224-5766 ISSN (Online)2225-0484

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