Borders which are
attributes of nation states became a phenomenon in Africa after the partition
of Africa by the European imperial governments. The imperial powers gave little
consideration to the far-reaching impact of their actions on the people of the
continent. Thus arbitrary splitting the continent into spheres of economic
influence for exploitation. Ethnic considerations were ignored just as physical
features were split between nations such that after independence the problem of
defunctionalising the borders still remains a hindrance to cooperation, rapid
development and progress.
dispute between Nigeria and Cameroon over Bakassi peninsular arose from their
long, but ill-defined border which is of colonial origin. However, it has
remained a source of conflict in the direct bilateral relations of these two
countries since their independence. The work therefore takes a cursory look at
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Table of Contents
National Defence: An Analysis Purpose of Study
OF THE BASIC CONCEPT
Settings Notes and References
EVOLUTION OF NIGERIA'S BOUNDARY POLICY
Boundaries as a
Source of Conflict
The Kano Meeting
The 1981 Border
Response Pressures of Retaliation Notes and References
the Kings and Chiefs of Old Calabar and Britain
Agreements of 1885, 1886, 1890 and 1893
Agreement, March 11, 1913
of the Inhabitants of Bakassi Peninsula
of ICJ Ruling in 1994
National Defence: An Analysis
The history of
Nigeria may be described as one of a continuous encounter with border problems.
We have heard varying manifestations of all the categories. The spatial
dimensions are evidently the most dramatic. We have a total of five
international boundaries measuring, all together, about 4,775 kilometers
(besides) the internal boundaries that define the 36 constituent states
(excluding the Federal Capital Territory) and the Local Government Areas.
categories include those of the over 200 ethnic groups as well as the cleavages
between religious camps and the fissions between social classes, to say nothing
of the new phenomenon of women versus men folk.
Readers with just
a nodding acquaintance with our (contemporary) history should have no
difficulty in appreciating the roles which these different categories have
played in the nation's growth and development, border incidents vis-a-vis
proximate countries; the expulsion of illegal aliens and the closure of
borders; the national question and the treatment of ethnic minorities (and) the
clashes of Muslims and Christians. In these and other ways, the border poses
challenges that severely put to test the managerial capability of those in charge of the
machine of state, Colonel J.N. Shagaya, Honourable Minister of Internal
characteristic of the nation-state is centralized control of territory.
Accordingly, its demand for boundaries and boundary maintenance is insatiable.
Boundaries mark off the area of jurisdiction vis-a-vis other, especially
limitrophe, state; they are also requited for the purpose of internal
differentiation and delineation into the several levels and units of
sub-national administration. The almost limitless extent to which the
nation-state is bound up with the border phenomenon has been indicated by the
former Honourable Minister of Internal Affairs, Colonel John N. Shagaya in the
opening quotation to this chapter. Colonel Shagaya acknowledged the fact that
"the history of Nigeria, like that of any other nation-state, may be
described as one of a continuous encounter with border problematic etc.
There are in
Nigeria ample manifestations of both the spatial and functional categories of
the border problems. With regards to the spatial category and, for the
nation-state based on centralized control of territory, the more basic, the
enumeration covers not only the international boundary system with a total
length of about 5000 kilometers drawn through extremely diverse geographical
and cultural zones: of these, approximately 1,000 are with Benin Republic in
the west, close to 1,500 with Niger in the north, about 75 with the Chad
Republic in the north-east, almost 1,700 with Cameroon in the east, and nearly
700 along the Atlantic seaboard. There are as well the internal boundaries, delineating
the areas of jurisdiction of the 36, constituent states (excluding the Federal
Capital Territory of Abuja) and the Local
Managers of the
Nigerian state machine have also had to grapple with several cases of
functional boundaries such as those of the over 200 ethnic groups, a good
number of them - including major ones like the Hausa, the Yoruba, the Kanuri
and the Efik - spilling across the international boundaries; the cleavages
between religious camps, especially those between Christians and Muslims; and
the fissions between and among social classes. This perspective easily shows
that the boundary question is, in essence, not different from the national
question. The extent of the relevance of this question to defence and security
concerns is indicated in the widely accepted functional definition of territory
as "a defended area". The validity of this definition is proved by
the data on international relations discussed below. The position in Nigeria is
clearly stated in Section 197 (1) of 1979 Constitution, as suspended and
amended by Decrees Nos. 1 of 1984 and 17 of 1985 respectively, which provided for
the establishment, equipping and maintenance of an army, a navy, an air-force
and such other branches of the armed forces as may be considered necessary in the more exact
words of an expert, for the purpose of (a) defending Nigeria from external aggression;
(5) maintaining its territorial integrity and securing its borders from
violation on land, sea or air; (c) suppressing insurrection and acting in aid
of civil authorities to restore order when called upon to do so; (d) performing
such other functions as may be prescribed (such 8S undertaking relief or welfare
duties in such cases as national disaster, and contributing to the maintenance
of peace in part of the world).
performance of these roles is easily illustrated by the observable use from
time to time of the armed forces personnel and equipment, especially those of
the Nigerian army, to deal with problems arising from the functions and
malfunctions of the various boundaries. Such uses become necessary when the
impacts threaten the nations territorial integrity, the watchword of our
defence policy. Witness, for example, the border enforcement
duties performed by the armed forces during emergencies such as have frequently
warranted the official closure of the international boundaries; border patrol
duties in peacetime aimed at beefing up the efforts of specialized state
apparatuses such as the Departments of Customs and Immigration Services; the
prosecution of the Civil War of 1967-70 “to keep Nigeria one”; the exchange of
artillery fire with Chadian troops in 7983 to ward off a perceived threat, if
not actual violation of the nation's border in the Lake Chad; the deployment of
soldiers to ensure peace on such violently disputed interstate boundaries as
those between the Cross River and each of Anambra and Into states as well as to
bring under control the well-known violent outbursts between Muslim factions
with particular reference to the activities of the notorious Maitatsine groups,
as well as between Muslims and Christians such as occurred in Kaduna state in
March 1987; the prominent participation of the UN peace-keeping activities
since 1960 and the more recently initiated joint border patrol, in
collaboration with Cameroonian armed forces, to keep the peace in disputed
sections of the vexatious border between both countries.
But critical as
the border perspective is to an understanding of our history and contemporary
problems, including defence concerns, its systematic application as a framework
of analysis still awaits necessary popularization. There are no special border
research collections and, except for Dupe Irele's praiseworthy though grossly
inadequate effort on the Nigeria-Cameroon border, there are no specialized bibliographies’ In spite of the
highly reputed works by Nigerian historians on the national and regional
African history, identifiable gaps in knowledge are underscored by a conspicuous absence of Black
Africa's leading nation's territorial history. Only two published works by
Prescott and Adejayi J.C., both geographers, so far touch directly on the issue
of internal hour a 25. Nigeria's international boundaries rank among the best
researched of any single African state, having been continuously subjected,
since their probation, to scholarly investigations: a successive generation of
indigenous and, most especially, foreign scholars drawn variously from the well-established,
if not .prestigious, ate centric sub-disciplines of political geography, diplomatic
history, international law and international politics. However, there is a
conspicuous lack of concern for necessary theoretical framework based on the operationalization
of the border as a basic concept.
Purpose of Study
To examine the issue of cross border cooperation in Nigeria Cameroon relation.
To illustrate how the Bakassi Issue is not only that of
economy but also security.
To examine the outcome of the Bakassi conflict between
Nigeria and Cameroon.
The study is
significant in the sense that it will proffer ways and means of dealing with
border conflicts. It will also enable policy makers to learn
from past mistakes to be able to better handle situation of like-manner in the
future. Furthermore it will be a new addition to the body of knowledge
available in the area.
The study is
aimed at analysis of the Bakassi Peninsular conflict between Nigeria and
Cameroon and new frontiers and borders as concepts of separation and
co-operation. In this study, data collection will be a hybrid of documentary
analysis. The primary data will be collected through unstructured interviews
members of the boundary commission and academics. Secondary data will be
sourced from library, journals published and unpublished materials and the
internet. Data analysis technique will be qualitative with comparison of data
obtained from various services in order to establish their credibility.
Findings will be presented in a descriptive form.
Introduction. This chapter introduces the work by discussing the background to
the study, the objective of study, statement of the problem, theoretical
framework, and significance of the study. It also highlights methodology for
examines the definition of basic concepts and Nigeria's border problems with
the local setting.
examines the evolution of Nigeria's boundary policy as well as looking at
boundaries as a source of conflict.
delves into the issue of Nigeria and Cameroon over the disputed Bakassi
peninsular. The chapter sees the dispute as arising from their long, but
ill-defined border which is of colonial origin.
focuses on the way forward based on findings. To this end, the chapter
recommends appropriate measures that could be employed to mitigate the dispute.
relations, theory is used as an intellectual tool to orient and organize
knowledge and to guide the formulation of priorities in the design of research.
Different theories could be used in international relations to explain events,
issues or conflicts. In this boundary conflict between Cameroon and Nigeria,
game theory of Anatol Rapport will be more applicable. Politics as well as
conflicts in international relations is no less than a game. It is a game in
the sense that the inter-state actions and the actors involved second-guess the
action of the other in advance. It is a decision-making process in which costly
mistakes can even lead to war.
Rapport Anatol, game theory deals with the issues in conflict situations. It
involves the study of cooperation and 'competition, without regard to the
particular entities involved, and issue of rationality associated with such
phenomena. The intellect has to be put in use to bear on a science of human
conflict. To analyses a conflict there are relative values that need to be
taken into consideration.
With game theory,
the rational players discover the optimum strategy that could be pursued. It
portrays the strategy players actually choose in specific situations. It is all
about a method of studying decision making in conflict situation. Game theory differentiates
the outcome of a game, which is either loss or gain. The winner wins all and
the looser loses all. The basic idea of game theory could be zero-sum games,
which the theory solves, or non-zero-sum games, which have no general solution.
With the non-zero-sum game, the two parties may decide to co-operate with each
other by communication through the exchange of information concerning choices
to be made. Of particular substantive interest is the prisoner's dilemma. These
of collective action, which characterize many social, economic and political
problems. This occurs when communication ceased to exist between the two
the sovereign owner of the Bakassi peninsula, facts and ideals from both
Cameroon and Nigeria concerning the area in dispute has to be taken into
consideration. These facts are the treaties that were signed before and after
independence, the opinion of the indigenes in the area and proper demarcation
of the territory.
Many scholars and
writers have expressed their opinion on the Bakassi peninsula boundary conflict
between Nigeria and Cameroon. Some scholars have tried to uncover the secrets
of the treaties signed by the imperial masters that colonized these two
countries as well as the recent treaties after independence. Others have endeavored
to uncover why there have not been any occurrence of war between these two
countries despite all the hostilities encountered by the indigenes of Bakassi
in his “public opinion on the Nigeria/ Cameroon crisis” elaborated on how
Nigerians were surprised why their country had not gone to war with Cameroon
and why the country refrained from initiating hostilities against Cameroon.
According to him, the public could not see any reason why the Shagari
administration rejected military action against Cameroon when Cameroonian
gendarmes gunned down five Nigerian soldiers on routine border patrol duty. The
conclusion that can be reached, however, is that decision was taken in spite of
and not in accordance with the Federal Government perception of the public
opinion. This shows the way the foreign policy of Nigeria is being formulated
and executed with disregard and neglect of public opinion.
Sodeinde in “Boundary Conflict Resolution through the Spatial Analysis of Social,
Commercial and Cultural Interaction of People Living along Boundary Area” wrote
on the various visible means of identifying a boundary and how to resolve
boundary conflicts. According to him, problems associated with boundary
conflicts arising from visible natural or man-made features could be avoided by
using the area of intersection as the guidance for routine boundary lines.
Oscar Oyene B.
Ede In “The Nigeria-Cameroon Boundary Diplomatic Intrigues and Crisis” gave
some geneses of the problem by analyzing the era of the colonial conquest. He
explained the origin of the Bakassi problem attributing it to the failure of
the colonial masters, Britain and Germany during the scramble and partition
which ended up creating boundaries not properly demarcated. These boundaries
particularly that in the southern part were ill-defined.
in "Nigeria's Border with Cameroon" narrates that both countries have
never disguised the fact that a border dispute exists between them. He also
explained the origin of the dispute which according to him dates back to the
United Nations plebiscite over the future of the former Northern and Southern
Cameroon, the irresponsibility of the British and German government to properly
demarcate boundaries between their various administered areas. He concluded by
narrating the series of meetings between the two heads of states and at
resolving their boundary problems and their efforts to uphold the aims and
objectives of the Organization of African Unity (OAU).
Ate Bassey E. In
"Nigeria-Cameroon Boundary Disputes: The Legal Political Position, particularly as it affects the maritime section"
attributes the dispute to ill-defined border of colonial origin.
Akinterinwa in "In The Event of Nigeria-Cameroon War", opposed
Professor Ngole by saying that "Cameroon does not have the territorial
size, demography, resources, etc, of Nigeria. Even though all the inhabitants
of Nigeria may not support going to war with Cameroon, at any given point in
time, the truth remains that more than 16 million of them have always believed
that Cameroon has always been a bad neighbour".
That means in the
event of any Nigeria-Cameroon war, Cameroon will suffer more than Nigeria will
do, because the strength and goodwill of their 16 million people in relation to
that of more than 100 million people of Nigeria cannot be compared.
Bassey "Before the Final Ruling" On Akinterinwa's "In the Event
of a Cameroon War" was thinking along side with Akinterinwa. He critically
analyzed the fact that the ICJ might not present the best mechanism in resolving
the Bakassi peninsula dispute since the OAU which they both belong also lack
the capacity and character to mediate and resolve this conflict. Thus enforcing
the ICJ's ruling will prove a sticky point. For basically, international law
which is normative is facilitated by the good will of states, who are signatory
to the various treaties and contentions which empowers and enables its article.
All these books have been written to demo state which country has the sovereign
right over the peninsula.
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