The purpose of this study was to look at the military and Nigerian politics: an assessment of the military’s dominance over the Nigerian political sphere from 1999 to 2015. The study looks at the historical background in Nigeria from 1966 to 1976. The role of military authority in the transition to democracy from 1976 is also investigated in the paper. Finally, the study assesses the military’s dominance over Nigeria’s political landscape from 1999 to 2015. The research was conducted using historical research analysis. The findings found that the military’s dominance continues to be felt in many aspects of governance in the country, as the military elite amassed vast riches throughout their lengthy tenure in power. When the country reverted to democracy in 1999, Most of the retired military personnel who held political roles or served during the military administration were in their forties and fifties when President Obasanjo retired them. They couldn’t sit back and watch the government do nothing. They had interests to protect, and doing so outside of politics would be tough. Some went into business, while others saw politics as a way to further their power. They entered politics, ran for office, backed politicians, and funded elections. General Olusegun Obasanjo’s election as President in 1999 was substantially influenced by the military. Retired military officers have been actively involved in Nigerian politics since 1999. Governors have come from the military (Prince Olagusoye Oyinlola, Osun State; Jonah Jang, Plateau State), They play important roles in the country’s business, politics, nation-building, and peacekeeping. The retired military officers have likewise controlled the Fourth Republic for 14 of the present 21 years. As a result, the report recommends that the political class and elites avoid repeating the country’s experience between 1979 and 1983, which resulted in the military’s return to politics. In addition, the country’s socio-economic concerns should be objectively addressed, with a focus on the country’s worrisome incidence of insecurity and unemployment.
BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Flora Shaw, who later married Lord Lugard, the British colonial administrator, invented the word “Nigeria” on January 8, 1897, and used it as the title of an article in The Times (Meek, 1960) to describe the huge region surrounding the River Niger and its basin. It was originally known as the Niger-area, but after a lengthy period of use, it was abbreviated to Nigeria. Mungo Park was on his way to explore the Niger River when he came across this enormous expanse along the river. Nigeria has a population of approximately 150 million people, making it the most populated country in Sub-Saharan Africa. The country’s population density is 145 people per square kilometer (Nigerian National Population Commission: Abuja, Nigeria, 2001).
Military intervention is essentially a military officer’s attempt to become involved in the political process in order to improve what they see to be the major fault with it. This explains why, whenever a group of military officers seizes power, the main justifications they use to justify their participation are issues like instability, official corruption, violent political crises linked to elections, and partisan politics (Amujo, 2011).
On January 15, 1966, the military seized power in Nigeria.
became engrossed in the political debate. In fact, they became embroiled in a procedure that contradicted their professional training and attitude. They aimed to reform the polity, for example. Some of these may be justified, but the vast majority were carried out to serve local interests, which inevitably resulted in the emergence of new problems that the military appears unable to address. After decades of military misadventure in politics, Nigerians realized that the military intervention, which they had been so enthusiastic about and welcomed, was an outlier and a major setback for the country (Elaigwu, 1986). Military rule isn’t open and inclusive; instead, it’s limited, exclusive, and frequently autocratic. The military used ethnic, regional, religious, and communal identities to gain control. The more the democratic process is heightened, the greater the risk of instability, and thus the easier it is for the military to rationalize its actions.
STATEMENT OF PROBLEM
Nigeria’s political sphere has always centred around its prior presidents, who, according to history, held one or two political positions in the country’s previous republic or are currently in power in the fourth republic (Gambari,1995). Nigeria has had four presidents since 1999, according to political history. Except for Goodluck Jonathan, all of these presidents served in the military during Nigeria’s military dictatorship from 1966 to 1979, followed by democracy in 1999. (Etebom,2014). Obasanjo, for example, was the military president from 1976 to 1979 before becoming the democratic president in 1999. After serving in the military from 1964 to 1975, Umaru Musa Yar’Adua became the country’s first democratic president in 2007, succeeding Olusegun Obasanjo. Following Jonathan’s presidency, Buhari, a former head of state under the military administration from 1983 to 1985, was elected democratically in 2015. The military and Nigerian politics are set against this backdrop: an estimate of the military’s political dominance in Nigeria from 1999 to 2015
OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The study’s overall goal is to examine the military and Nigerian politics, with a focus on the military’s dominance over the Nigerian political sphere from 1999 to 2015.
In order to investigate the military’s historical antecedents in Nigeria.
To look into the role of military rule in the democratic transition.
To assess the military’s political dominance in Nigeria from 1999 to 2015.
For the study, the following hypothesis has been proposed:
H0: Between 1999 and 2015, there was no military dominance in Nigeria’s political arena.
HA; Between 1999 and 2015, the military dominated the Nigerian political landscape.
SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The military and Nigerian politics will be examined in this study, which will include an assessment of the military’s dominance over the Nigerian political sphere from 1999 to 2015. As a result, the research will be important in the following ways.
Nigerians: This study is important to the Nigerian people because it would reveal the military’s dominance in the country’s political sphere, allowing citizens to assess whether it has been beneficial to the country’s growth.
Academics: This study is important to the academic community since it will add to the current literature on the military’s dominance of Nigeria’s political landscape.
SCOPE OF THE STUDY
This research will look at the military’s historical background in Nigeria. The study will also look into the role of military authority in the democratic transition. Finally, the study will assess the military’s dominance over Nigeria’s political landscape from 1999 to 2015.
LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
The researcher faced some challenges in conducting this study, including time limits, money constraints, language barriers, and the attitudes of the respondents.
Furthermore, there was a component of researcher prejudice. The researcher had some biases, which may have shown up in the manner the data was gathered, the kind of people questioned or sampled, and how the data was evaluated afterward. It’s impossible to overestimate the impact of all of this on the findings and conclusions.