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The Impact of Neocolonialism on the Social, Economic and Political Life of Nigeria - Essay Example

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The researcher of this following paper aims to evaluate and present the difference between colonialism and neocolonialism. It is the main concern of the paper to assess the impact of neocolonialism on the social, economic and political life of Nigeria. …
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The Impact of Neocolonialism on the Social, Economic and Political Life of Nigeria
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"The Impact of Neocolonialism on the Social, Economic and Political Life of Nigeria"

Download file to see previous pages It can be derived from the report and the previous research conducted on the topic that British colonial rule in Nigeria from the second half of the nineteenth century to the early 1950s is associated with intense violence by the colonisers, with “the use of force to damage people and objects; the use of force to maintain control; and the use of humiliating words to generate violence reactions”. “Nigeria was a creation of British colonialism” states Wright, to fulfill British self-interest and political calculations. The country came into being only at the end of the nineteenth century, with British imperial policy drawing together different groups of people and ecological zones over the duration of several decades to form the country. In the first half of the twentieth century, imperial arrogance formulated and implemented policies promoting British rather than African advantage. These policies developed the social and political identities of the colony, and produced long-term problems which Nigeria struggled with after 1960 when the country gained independence from colonialism. Neocolonialism, the last stage of imperialism is defined as “control of the economic and development destiny by a former colonial area such as Africa by outside powers after independence”. Neocolonialism is illustrated by the British giving independence to Nigeria with one hand, while taking it away with the other. Thesis Statement: The purpose of this paper is to distinguish between Colonialism and Neocolonialism in Nigeria, and to assess the impact of neocolonialism on the social, economic and political life of the country. The Difference Between Colonialism and Neocolonialism in Nigeria Colonialism formed the root cause for political crisis by replacing pre-colonial political systems that worked for Africans with alien models. Ethnic conflicts that now destablise the continent were created by changing the geographical outlines in the map of Africa, bringing diverse people together without taking into consideration established borders. “The new nation states were artificial and many were too small to be viable” (Obadina 2000, p.1). Not even one-thirds of the countries in Africa have populations larger than 10 million, with Nigeria being a significant exception. African societies were divided into separate groups on the basis of western multi-party democracy imposed by colonial powers. The introduction of party politics by colonial administration fuelled the blaze of ethnic conflicts in Nigeria. The imposition of alien rule makes colonialism a dictatorial regime that did not allow people their right of self determination. Colonialism “brought death, pain and humiliation to millions of its victims” (Obadina 2000, p.2). Colonialism as a civilizing mission is only a myth, because Europe’s economic and political selfinterest drove the system. However, some useful acts carried out by colonial powers for fulfilling their economic and administrative needs were the buidling of infrastructure such as railway for carrying export commodities, and undertaking the education of a few Africans to assist them in running the colonies. At the same time, beneficial contributions were not made by colonialism to any part of Africa. Significantly, economically stronger countries like Nigeria and Ghana were depleted of their infrastructure, leaving only a few railway lines, rudimentary communication and commuting systems and limited numbers of graduates. Although colonialism did not help Africa’s poor, the elites flourished as a result of the creation of opportunities by the linking of the continent to the western world. The emergence of neocolonialism with the end of British colonialism ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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