STRUCTURAL VIOLENCE IN THE NORTH CENTRAL GEO-POLITICAL ZONE OF NIGERIA: A CONFLICT TRANSFORMATION APPROACH

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TABLE OF CONTENTS
Content Page
Title page i
Certification ii
Dedication iii
Acknowledgements iv
Abstract xi
Table of Contents vi
List of Tables x
List of Figures x

CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION
1.1 Background to the Study 1
1.2 Statement of the Problem 3
1.3 Objective of the Study 4
1.4 Research Questions 4
1.5 Significance of the Study 4
1.6 Scope of the Study 5
1.7 Methodology 5
1.8 Research Design 6
1.9 Area of Study 7
1.10 OperationalDefinition of Terms 8

CHAPTER TWO: REVIEW OF LITERATURE
2.0 Introduction 9
2.1 The Concept of Structural Violence 10
2.2 Structural Violence in Nigeria 13
2.3 Factors responsible for Structural Violence in North Central Nigeria 14
2.3.1 System of Government 14
2.3.2 Ethnic Diversity 18
2.3.3 The Case of the Minorities 19
2.3.4 Political Factor 20
2.3.5 Social Factor 21
2.3.6 Economic Factor 22
2.3.7 Colonial Legacy 22
2.4 Impacts/Consequences of Structural Violence 23
2.4.1 Political Impact 23
2.4.2 Economic Impact 24
2.4.3 Social Impact 24
2.4.4 Impact on National Security 25
2.5 Structural Violence and Armed Conflict in Nigeria 25
2.6 Theoretical Discourse 27
2.6.1 Conflict Transformation Theory 28
2.6.2 Structural conflict/Violence Theory 32
2.7 Gaps in the Literature 34

CHAPTER THREE: CASES OF STRUCTURAL VIOLENCE IN
THE NORTH CENTRAL ZONE OF NIGERIA
3.0 Introduction 37
3.1 History of the North Central Zone 37
3.2 Overview of the Nature of Conflicts in the North Central Zone: 2011-2015 43
3.2.1 Resource Conflicts 43
3.2.2 Ethnic Violent Conflicts 47
3.2.3 Religious Conflicts 48
3.2.4 Political Crises 50
3.2.5 Socio-Economic Crises 51
3.2.6 Indigene versus Settlers Conflict 53
3.2.7 Urban and Semi-Urban Conflicts 55
3.3 Selected Incidences of Non Boko Haram Conflicts in the North Central Zone 56
3.3.1 Violent Conflicts in Southern Kaduna 56
3.3.2 Violent Conflicts in Benue State 57
3.3.3 Violent Conflicts in Plateau State 58
3.3.4 Violent Conflicts in Nassarawa State 60
3.3.5 Violent Conflicts in Taraba State 62
3.3.6 Violent Conflicts in Kogi State 62
3.4 Effects of the Conflicts and Mitigation Strategies 63
3.4.1 Humanitarian Crises 63
3.4.2 Socioeconomic Effects of the Crises 63
3.5 Efforts Made Towards Dispute Resolution 65
3.5.1 Traditional Authorities: 65
3.5.2 Community Intervention 67
3.5.3 The Police, Courts and Army 69
3.5.4 Local and State Governments 69
3.6 Restructuring Nigerian Federalism to Prevent Structural Violence 70
3.7 Conflict Management 71
3.8 Conflict Management Strategies 72
3.8.1 Conflict Resolution 73
3.8.2 Conflict Transformation 74
3.9 Federalism/ Structural Violence and Conflict Transformation 78
3.9.1 Indigene-Settler Divide 79
3.9.2 Issues of Insurgency 80
3.9.3 Create Greater Empl1oyment Opportunities 81
3.9.4 Political Reforms 81
3.10 Ethical Considerations 82

CHAPTER FOUR: DATA ANALYSIS, RESULTS
AND DISCUSSION OF FINDINGS
4.0 Introduction 84
4.1 Research Question One: Nature of structural violence in North Central Nigeria 84
4.2.1 Political-Based Structural Violence 84
4.2.2 Conflict Caused by Direct influence of Structural Violence 87
Content Page
4.3 Research Question 3: Prevalence of Conflict resulting from structural violence in central Nigeria from 2011-2015 88
4.4 Research Question Four: Use of Conflict Transformation in Management of Structural Violence Prevalent in the Region 88
4.5 Discussion of Findings 90

CHAPTER FIVE: SUMMARY, CONCLUSION
AND RECOMMENDATIONS
5.0 Introduction 94
5.1 Summary 94
5.2 Conclusion 95
5.3 Recommendations 97
5.4 Limitation of the Study 99
REFERENCES 100

LIST OF TABLES
Table Page
3.1 Incidents of Conflict in North-Central Nigeria, Jan-May, 2014 44

LIST OF FIGURES
Figure Page
3.1: Map of the North Central Zone 41
3.2: Map of Nigeria showing the North Central Zone 42
3.3 Snapshots of Conflict Data in North-Central Nigeria 47

CHAPTER ONE
INTRODUCTION
1.1 Background to the Study
Africa, especially the Sub-Saharan region has been plagued by conflict for many decades now (Clempson, 2012). There has been a great deal of war and bloodshed since the colonial masters left the continent. According to De Ree and Nillesn (2009), the last six decades has experienced up to 47 civil wars in sub –Saharan Africa which in turn has resulted in over 1.37 million deaths on the battlefield and an even larger number of civilian deaths. In Nigeria, over the past two decades, especially in the middle belt, the country has also experienced an increased level of violence” (Action Aid Nigeria, 2014). Experts have in several studies identified economic disparities and more importantly structural violence, as key factors in the rise of violence in the region (Olojo, 2013; Walker, 2012; and Adesoji, 2010).
According to Olojo (2012), structural violence has predicated thousands of impoverished and unemployed youths in northern Nigeria to take part in armed violence. This state of events according to the report has resulted in the said youths becoming willing recruits for the terrorist organisationBoko Haram’s who has being the main cause of a series of conflicts and armed violence predominant in the Northern part of Nigeria. Olojo (2012) attributed the main cause of the Boko Haram crisis to poverty, lack of education and social marginalisation. This makes a clear case for the premise that structural violence is one of the more responsible factors leading to armed violence and conflict in the region under review.
Another serious case of conflict that has plagued the North-central region of Nigeria in recent years is the crisis that has persisted between Fulani herdsmen and farmers in various states in the region. The problem here can be traced to a belief of land and ‘overlord-ship’ entitlement held by one or both parties and the resulting violence is caused by the feeling that the other party is trespassing or encroaching on land that does not belong to them. Other cases reported include Fulani herdsmen taking up arms against farmers who accuse them of despoiling their crops with cattle during grazing and farmers taking up arms against Fulani herdsmen upon hearing that ‘so and so’ farmer was attacked in ‘so and so’ town. Again the development of these cases of conflict can can be explained using the concept of structural violence. Galtung (1969)’s structural violence paradigm underscores how socio-cultural systems, political structures and state institutions create structural violence among people and indirectly act as instigators of armed violence and conflict. By implication, it is the many factors of political, social and ethnic machinations (e.g implementation of land tenure and the concept of communal land, lack of proper litigation and inter-ethnic conflict mediation in rural areas etc) that has created the aforementioned beliefs of entitlement as well as a system that can continually breed violence and conflict. Accordingly, the theory suggests how seeds of hostility are sown and ultimately degenerate into large scale uprisings, revolutions and conflicts within societies.

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