the existential condition of the ijaws in the emerging socio-economic milieu of nigeria

Nnamdi Azikiwe Journal of Philosophy 7 (1):90-97 (2015)
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THE EXISTENTIAL CONDITION OF THE IJAWS IN THE EMERGING SOCIO-ECONOMIC AND POLITICAL MILIEU OF NIGERIA. By Ebo Socrates, PhD. Nigeria is a hybrid nation of over two hundred and fifty ethnic nationalities. The Ijaws as a people among the multitude of peoples that have come to constitute the geographic expression and sovereign entity known as Nigeria, find themselves enmeshed in the fluctuating socio-economic milieu of Nigeria. They as well as other ethnic nationalities that constitute Nigeria, found themselves bound to the contingencies and exigencies of the nation-state called Nigeria not by act of will or treaty but by the Lugardian fiat which in itself was a full expression of the British imperialist will to power. By fiat and history, a country was made; the country is Nigeria, its people simply are; a fact of history. Their mode of being however, is a confluence of contraction and progress. So many models of nationhood explicates Nigeria. But Nigeria, is undeniably a “torn” nation. In the words of Samuel Huntington, a nation of conflicting civilizations: the Islamic civilization and the Judeo-Christian civilization. The Ijaws, an oil rich minority tribe found themselves entwined and involved in the destiny of this phenomenal nation called Nigeria. Has such an entwinement been a curse or blessing? Have the Ijaws significant power in the organogram of the Nigerian nationhood? Are they tossed about by the tide and flow of events or are they active movers in the making of the Nigerian history? This paper critically looks at these existential realities and elucidates the existential condition of the Ijaws in the contemporary Nigeria


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