Democracy and Violent Conflicts in Nigeria: Implications for National Development
There seem to be a debate on the validity of democratic peace theory. While some scholars argued that democracy engenders peace, others argued exactly the opposite. In the Nigerian context, democracy appears to have been characterised by violence. With heavy reliance on secondary data backed by analytical approach, the paper examines democracy and violent conflicts in Nigeria and its implications for development with a particular focus on the Nigeria‟s Fourth Republic. The paper found that; the nature of competition for political power, multi-ethnic nature of the polity as well as corruption, unemployment and poverty are some of the factors which make democracy in Nigeria‟s Fourth Republic violent-ridden. The paper therefore, recommends among others, the need to cut down on the remuneration/allowances of political offices holders and emphasizes the re-orientation of the political elite towards shunning divisive politics.
Keywords: Democracy, Violent Conflict, Political Elite, Poverty, Nigeria
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