The Niger Delta Conflict and Military Reform in Nigeria

  • Christian A. Lutz
Part of the Global Power Shift book series (GLOBAL)


In terms of democratic governance, Nigeria has a troubled history. Since its independence in 1960, Nigeria was under military rule for 29 years. Several coup d’états led to frequent changes in military regimes, interrupted by three failed attempts to establish a fragile democratic system – none lasting longer than 6 years (1960–1966, 1979–1983 and 1993). With the renewed transition to a democratic system in 1999, Nigeria experienced its longest period of civilian rule. But this transition process is complicated by severe internal tensions. One of the most important is the Niger Delta conflict. At the core of this conflict lies the dispute about the control over resources. Nigeria is one of the world top ten oil exporting countries with oil revenues generating 40 % of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and over 70 % of the federal budget. While the oil deposits are almost completely located in the Niger Delta, this region is, with almost 80 % of the population living below the poverty line, one of the poorest of Nigeria (Joel, 2009, p. 163).


Gross Domestic Product Niger Delta Security Sector Reform International Crisis Group Domestic Security 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Political ScienceUniversity of FreiburgFreiburgGermany
  2. 2.Albert-Ludwigs-UniversityFreiburgGermany

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