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NIGERIA’S AFRICAN POLICY UNDER PRESIDENT SHAGARI
This project is an attempt to contribute to the debate on the problems of president Shagari’s African policy during the last four years, October 1st 1979 to September 30th 1983. His African policy has been described in various circles as not dynamic and does not reflect that commitment like the military regime from which he took over. In rejecting this view I have in my analysis shown that indeed there has been continuity in Shagari’s African policy with that of the previous regimes since independence. This was shown through an analysis of the objectives pursued by the various regimes and the means available at their disposal in getting at the set goals. From my analysis it was shown that the non-assertive style of Shagari’s foreign policy was mainly due to the nature of the economy. Interestingly, the study showed that the nature of the economy of any particular country has tremendous impact on that country’s foreign policy style and those changes in style and militancy should not be confused with actual foreign policy content.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Title Page - - - - - - - - - - i
Certification - - - - - - - - - ii
Dedication - - - - - - - - - iii
Acknowledgement - - - - - - - - iv
Abstract - - - - - - - - - - vi
Table of Contents - - - - - - - - vii
CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION
1.1 Statement of the Problem
1.2 Aim of the Study
1.3 Scope of the Study and Methodology
CHAPTER TWO: NIGERIA’S AFRICAN POLICY BEFORE PRESIDENT SHAGARI
CHAPTER THREE: SHAGARI’S AFRICAN POLICY TOWARDS HER IMMEDIATE NEIGHBOURS
3.1 Nigeria and Cameroon Boundary Dispute
3.2 Shagari’s Mediatory Role in the Chadian Crises
3.3 Shagari’s African Policy towards ECOWAS
CHAPTER FOUR: SHAGARI’S AFRICAN POLICY TOWARDS THE REST OF AFRICA
4.1 Policy towards Western Sahara
4.2 Policy towards Namibia
4.3 Policy towards the Horn of Africa
4.4 Policy towards Apartheid and Racism in South Africa
4.5 Policy towards the Organization of African Unity.
CHAPTER FIVE: SUMMARY AND CONCLUSION
1.1 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
During the election campaign in 1979, the National Party of Nigeria (NPN) Presidential candidate promised to continue the foreign policy of his predecessor. In October, 1983 President Shagari again re – echoed this commitment. He emphasized:
“Our special commitment to Africa policy will continue. The struggle for the achievement of freedom for all the oppressed people of Africa will continue to attract our sympathy and support. No sacrifice the achievement of a real freedom and democracy in Africa” 1
But if one looks back to his tenure of office in the last four years, one finds that his foreign policy achievements have been superficial. Shagari’s four years administration had left us worse off in foreign policy when compared with the last regime from which he took over.
During his four years tenure of office President Shagari had always reiterated his commitment to the freedom of oppressed people of Africa and the world. The areas of attention being the hot spots of Africa, for instance,
1. West Africa, 10th October 1983, p. 2350
the Horn of Africa, Western-Sahara, Namibia, Chad and the existence of colonialism and white supremacist regimes in Africa.
But his foreign policy achievement is nothing to write home about. During the military era this country was instrumental to the speedy independence of Angola. There was greater coherence in foreign policy making in the country and above all we were consulted on major decisions that affected the African continent. Now what do we see? In the Horn of African president warfare has flooded the area with refugees. The all-embracing problem is that our foreign policy achievement during the military era is shipping away and should be restored.
1.2 AIM OF THE STUDY
The aim of the study is to look into what had been responsible for the difference between what President Shagari says he will do in terms of the foreign policy he inherited from his predecessor. They involves investigating and explaining the process by which the national and internal factors that impinge on those processes and also the institutional framework from which they emerged.
Only a thorough examination of the processes and means will enable us know what has been responsible for the difference between what President Shagari proclaimed he would do and what he has actually done in terms of the African policy to which he pledged to be committed.
1.3 SCOPE OF THE STUDY AND METHODOLOGY
This study is not a total review of Nigeria’s foreign policy since independence, but an analysis of Nigeria’s African policy in the years 1979 – 1983. In attempting to investigate the problem, we have limited our scope of inquiry to cover Nigeria’s African policy under President Shagari in the year 1979 to 1983. As a result, emphasis is on examination of the role Nigeria had played under Shagari in achieving her national objectives. These objectives include among other things the defense of her sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity, creation of necessary political and economic conditions in Africa, promotion of equality and self-reliance in Africa and promotion of justice and respect for human dignity in Africa, especially the dignity of the blackman. Such areas as Chad, Cameroon, the Horn of Africa, Western Sahara, recent events that had taken place in the organization of African Unity, the West African sub-region the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), Namibia and Apatheid in southern Africa will be our main areas of concern for analysis.
Since our level of analysis is the national state, we are interested in the activities of the people who belong to the Nigerian nation, particularly those who speak authoritatively for the Nigerian state. This is in conformity with the definition of foreign policy as:
“Action or ideas designed by policy makers to solve a problem or promote some change in the environment that is in the policies attitudes or actions of another state or states” 2
We are interested in the objectives and interests that the Shagari administration sought to promote or safeguard the methods and means which the objectives were pursued and the resources brought to bear. We will be interested in the general and specific determinants of foreign policy objectives and interest among them, the economy and its import and export bases, the internal political pressures and the nature and the ideology of the governing elites. For the Shagari Administration, the existence of colonialism and white supremacist regimes in Southern Africa was a major factor in foreign policy orientation.
2. Holsti, IK.J. International Policies (2nd ed.) Englewood Cliff N.J. Prentice Hall, 1972, p. 18.
And activities and we will be interested in this factor as well. The historical dynamic approach is employed here because we believe that the decisions taken by the previous administration logically led to the actions taken by the Shagari administration.
Information for the project has been sought in secondary sources. We utilized mostly information got from newspaper, write ups, seminar papers, journal bulletins on International Affairs, African Diary and library research.