Resource Control and Political Restructuring in Nigeria: A View from the South-South
Resource Control and Political Restructuring in Nigeria: A View from the South-South
The oil belt region of Nigeria called the Niger Delta and also known as the South-South has been in the news for some time now. The region is not only the hub of oil in the country but also the epic center of the resource-related conflict. Since the beginning of 2016, there has been a resurgence in violence activities in the region and the new militant groups that have emerged are re-echoing the age-long demands of the people of the region resource control and self-determination. This qualitative study examines the rationale behind the agitation for resource control and political restructuring of Nigeria. The study attempts to proffer solutions as to how the problems identified can be addressed. The study employed both primary and secondary sources of data. Primary data were collected by the researcher through semi-structured face-to-face interview of 12 Niger Deltans in four states of the region. Secondary data were sourced via journal articles, books, periodicals, newspapers, print interviews and internet materials. The data collected were analysed using NVivo 10 computer software for identifying patterns and themes from the interview transcript. The findings of the study show among others, that inequity in the distribution of the proceeds of the oil wealth, lack of social amenity, environmental degradation, defective federal structure, a conspiracy between the elites and TNOCs are the contributing factors for the agitation for resource control and political restructuring. The paper suggests, among others, a return of the greater percentage of oil wealth to the region of origin and participation of the oil-bearing communities in the oil and gas sector.
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