The Rights of Ethno-Cultural or Political Minorities and Development in Nigeria

David Aondoakaa Utume, Iveren Adoo Uganden


In Nigeria, the concept of minority has been misconceived and misapplied.  The colonialist classificatory scheme of identifying cultural or ethnic minorities and majorities has been excessively adhered to and politicized. This has produced politics of exclusion and the concomitant denial of rights, especially to groups considered political minorities. This can be couched as the ‘minoritazation’ of cultural, ethnic or even locational groups. In Nigeria, such politics of marginalization translates to exclusion from participation of human resources that cannot be ignored in the development agenda of the country. To reposition these minorities, a constitutional review aimed at restructuring power relations in the country needs to be undertaken. Any honest desire for development of Nigeria must cultivate the courage to undertake this politico-social engineering such as other countries like India have successfully done. This paper establishes a strong connection between the rights of ethno-cultural and political minorities and development in Nigeria through an empirical cataloguing of contribution of minorities to the political process in Nigeria.

Keywords: Ethnic minorities, National development, Political minorities, Political participation, Political exclusion

DOI: 10.7176/DCS/10-6-02

Publication date:June 30th 2020

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ISSN (Paper)2224-607X ISSN (Online)2225-0565

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