Reflections on Arab Spring in Nigeria: Constraints and Possibilities

  • I Johnson


In the light of the 2011 Arab spring that revealed to the whole world more about the legitimacy crisis, authoritarian rule, dynasty politics and bad governance in that region, this paper review the role of citizen in a revolution. In spite of the numerous advances in the Arab region, recent growth did not create enough jobs for the teeming population. Quite obviously, youth unemployment and feelings of marginalization contributed to citizen revolution in the Arab region. This paper argued that the underlying problems in that region are not different from that of Nigeria. Nigerian citizens have similar grievances and aspirations which can trigger off revolution. Although, the homogeneity and unity of purpose contributed to the success of the Arab revolution, the heterogeneity of the Nigerian state may hinder success of any revolution. This was clearly demonstrated in the recent 2012 fuel subsidy protest in which a section of the Nigerian state regionalized the popular protest. Despite these constraints, the paper shows that revolution is not a planned affair, and its occurrence in Nigeria is possible in the light of wide socioeconomic discontent. This paper concludes by outlining an alternative measures through which citizen revolution can be prevented in Nigeria.

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