Politics in Nigeria; Overview, Brief History, Problems, Prospects

Politics in Nigeria

As at the time Nigeria, as a country gained independence, the country was at the verge of advancing socially and economically, rapid change was to take place, and people were quite hopeful about the future of Nigeria.

Although people had imagined about political chaos which actually happened as a result of the military coup d’état as well as, the thirty months civil war in Nigeria.

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Politics in Nigeria; Overview, Brief History, Problems, Prospects
Politics in Nigeria – Photo Source: https://twitter.com

However, no person had actually seen why all those things happened. In their unquenchable quest for independence, leaders in the country have to reach out for compromises without taking into consideration their own differences such as the minorities problem in the country, the issues of equal opportunity in Nigeria, the issues of proper sharing of the nation’s wealth among other things. They tried this after independence, as the country faced the task of becoming a nation.

Brief History

The first republic (1960-66) was the federal coalition government, and this was mainly the northern NPC and the Eastern NCNC.

The western AG was led by Chief Obafemi Awolowo which was the opposition, while the leader of the coalition government was Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, who was the NPC deputy leader and also the first Federal Prime Minister.

It was in November, in the year 1960 when Dr. Nnamdi Azikwe, who was the leader of the NCNC became the first Governor-General in Nigeria.

The NPC-NCNC coalition government was said to have been hostile to the AG opposition. With the hostile acts, the federal government had always tried to exploit chaos and divisions within the AG to their own advantage and had succeeded.

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In the AG, there was a division and faction between some Awolowo’s loyalists, who believed to continue in their struggle as opposition until when they will win the federal power, and other factions led by Chief S. L. Akintola, who was the AG deputy leader and also the Premier of the western region, and who actually wanted to be part of the then federal government.

Although the latter had hoped that, the AG in particular and also the Western part of the country, in general, would share in the country’s independence packages, an AG party conference was, however, summoned in May of 1962 in order to discipline Akintola.

And he, the Akintola was subsequently replaced as Premier by Alhaji A. Adegbenro, who was believed to be loyal to Chief Awolowo, who was the party leader.

Problems of Nigerian Politics

Below are some of the problems of Nigerian politics:

1. Greed

Greed in actual sense has caused a lot of problems in Nigeria. Greed has eaten deep into the fabric of the Nigerian political system and has destroyed the country, turning things upside down.

Political parties have fought each other, they will want to win all elections, even though the rigging, in order to remain in office eternally. Greed is one of the political problems in Nigeria.

Read Also: Effects Of Money Politics In Nigeria

2. Bad Governance

Bad governance is another Nigerian political problem, and most of the political problems encountered in this country are traceable to bad governance.

The Nigerian government is vulnerable to violence and crisis because the system is badly handled, even as the country is poorly ruled.

Take for example, in the present administration, under President Buhari, there are a lot of flaws. The country is experiencing the hardest time ever since independence, and the president is not ready to take advice from anybody.

3. Political and Self Satisfaction

Politicians in public office are working for themselves, looting the public treasury. Their pockets are what they are looking first not the wellbeing of their constituents, who voted them to power.

Their belief is themselves first, that is why there are issues of uncontrolled level of corruption in the country. And this has remained a major political problem in Nigeria.

4. Corruption

Another political problem in the country is the issue of corruption. Corrupt government officials have given Nigeria problems more than what they have solved for Nigeria in recent times.

The Nigerian economy is on its knee as a result of some corrupt practices by Nigerian leaders. And you are wondering why the country is at where it is today, in terms of the sociopolitical and economic advancement of Nigeria.

5. Religion

Religion has played some role in Nigerian politics. So in Nigerian politics, you are either a Christian or a Muslim. Therefore, to succeed in Nigerian politics, you have to identify with either of the religious faith or both.

There are situations in the country, where unimaginable things are done just to earn votes from the two religious divides in Nigeria. You hear of religious sentiments, baize, violence, crisis, and killings, all in the name of politics.

Read Also: 10 Roles of Youths in Nigerian Politics

Prospects of Nigerian Politics

Below are some of the prospects of Nigerian politics:

1. Energy Consolidation

The likelihood is that Nigeria will improve on the supply of electricity to domestic, and commercial as well as, industrial users.

2. Food and Water Security

The system is working towards providing food and water security in the country, given the fact that agriculture will remain paramount to the present structure of the economy of Nigeria.

3. Poverty Eradication and Empowerment

Poverty is to be eradicated in the country, and the process will be beyond a mere reduction or alleviation of poverty in Nigeria. The poverty level is to be reduced to 20 percent by the year, 2020.

4. Education and Human Development

This is indispensable to the development of the country development, and Nigeria is working towards this.

5. Efficient & Effective Transportation and Communication

The system is to provide safe, and affordable, and qualitative as well as, reliable roads, and rail, and air, and also water transportation.

6. Security and Healthcare

This is social security, which has to do with incomes, and well-being as well as, self- maintenance, including healthcare.

7. Good Governance and Genuine Democracy

The system believes that there should be the rule of law in the system, where transparency guarantees, and credible elections, for good service delivery.

Read Also: Relationship between Education and Politics in Nigeria


The above article has been able to highlight the brief history of Nigerian politics, the problems facing the system, and the possible prospects of the Nigerian political system. It is my belief that the information will be of help to those, who read this.

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Joseph Athanasius

Joseph Athanasius is a Content Developer at InfoGuideNIgeria.com. InfoGuide Nigeria is a team of Resource Persons and Consultants led by Ifiokobong Ibanga. Page maintained by Ifiokobong Ibanga. If you need a personal assistance on this topic, kindly contact us.

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