Democracy and Its Adoption in Nigeria: Western Liberal or Indigenous Option

Murtala Ahmed, Mohammed Isah Shehu


This paper examined democracy and its adoption in Nigeria. The study was born out of the numerous debacles encountered by Nigeria and Nigerians in the process of achieving democracy. The study used secondary source to gather data. The study found that Nigerians desire and cherish to entrench a democratic system and government, the journey to achieve democracy is a long and trying one but Nigeria is still far from achieving it due to the failure of the system and the leaders to provide the suitable option and guidance, Nigeria’s present democratic setting is unnecessarily expensive and too accommodative, unwhole suitability of the Western liberal democracy to Nigeria’s socio-economic and political environment and failure to domesticate the democracy to suit Nigeria’s peculiar circumstances. It is also found that wholesome adoption of the Western liberal democracy will not suit the Nigerian context and so, there have to be adjustments to uniqueness of Nigerian state and societies and that excessive use of money in the polity hinders achieving democracy. The study recommended among others development and adoption of indigenous democratic values and principles, redistribution of national wealth, income and resources to ensure justice among Nigerians, extensive and intensive civic education to citizens,  constitutional enforcement of social justice among Nigerians, adoption of politics of pluralism and consensus, cultivation and institutionalization of habits of transparency and good governance especially on the part of the leaders, establishment of genuine national political parties, reviewing the presidential system currently operated to reduce excessive politics of accommodation and the cost of running government.

Keywords: Democracy, Liberal Democracy, Adoption, Achievement.


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