Colonialism and origin of boundary crisis in Nigeria

  • Boypa O. Egbe
  • Ibiang Obono Okoi


This paper is on “Colonialism and the Origin of Boundary Crisis in Nigeria”. It examines the origin of boundary crisis which started in Nigeria due to the introduction of the concept of defined boundaries, a European phenomenon of colonialism which historically is to demarcate the administrative units in Nigeria as in most other third world countries. That prior to the arrival of the European imperialist, the Nigerian area contained an amalgam of ethic, cultural and linguistic groups spread over numerous states with the British Government adopting the twin-policy of gradually amalgamating its various administrative units into one country while at the same time balkanising the country into smaller hierarchical administrative units. The colonial administrative units, which in most cases, did not conform to earlier political arrangement, gave birth to the first internal boundary crisis in Nigeria. The aim of this paper is to highlight the negative impact of internal boundary crisis on the Nigerian nation while the historical methodology adopted for the paper involved the use of both primary and secondary sources. The paper submit that internal boundary crisis right from the colonial period have been moderated by incessant conflicts which in turn led to the destruction of properties and loss of lives. It recommends that both federal and state governments as well as non-state actors should adopt an imaginative policy option that would lead peaceful settlement of boundary crisis.

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eISSN: 1813-2227