GLOBALIZATION AND ITS IMPACT ON NIGERIA FOREIGN POLICY
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1.1 Background of the Study
The transformation of the global village has come to be associated with the dynamism and frequency of technological advancement. One significant phenomenon that was extent prior to and during the cold war, was the technological advancement of nuclear and chemical weapons. The dissolution of socialism in the Eastern bloc raised questions about the emergent global village. One school opinionated that the world was heading towards a unipolar arrangement dominated by the United States. Another school opined the emergence of multipolar powers with relatively equal leverage. To the extent that these postulations were essentially political, blurred the unnoticed innovative constellation of economic forces.
Today, the domination of politics in the international scene has gradually given way to economic hegemony in the form of globalization. Though, the relationship between the two phenomena is cyclical, since one reinforces the other. Globalization optimizes the amelioration of international commerce on the international life of states. In the view of Ian Clark, at least since the mid-nineteenth century, international commerce has been thought to have a potentially pacifying effect on international life.
During the 1960s and 1970s, interdependence theorists made great play of the extent of economic and materials, interconnection, and concluded from this that there were radical changes underway, both in the categories of actors or the international stage and in the nature of their interests. Globalization has become a strong concept in the market place of ideas on international relations. This has brought about the colouration of the concept. For Jonathan R. Strand.
… “globalization involves the tying of firms, production, product markets, and financial markets into integrated transnational systems”. (2001).
Globalization is not new, though for thousands of years, people-and, later corporations – have been buying from and selling to each other in lands at great distances, such as through the fraud silk road. Since the independence of Nigeria in 1960, there have been a plethora of conceptual ideological transitions in the Nigeria’s foreign policy machinery. Essentially, they all strive towards an epistemological construction and definition of the thrust of Nigeria’s foreign policy. These conceptualizations are often regime specific and borne out of a psychological hunger to carve a regime identify that will create and leave lasting impressions on the minds of Nigerians. They are not necessarily products of deep and profound philosophical reflections. This crisis of myownism (regime identity) is one of the major causative agencies of project abandonment and public policy failure in Nigeria.
The concepts that have bestraddle foreign policy thought in Nigeria, in both official and nonofficial parlance are: national consensus in foreign policy, dynamic foreign policy, Africa as the centre piece of Nigeria’s foreign policy, concentric cycles, concert of medium powers, economic diplomacy, and citizen diplomacy among many others. These conceptual mutations in Nigerian foreign policy engineering, we contend, lack my ideological consistency, operationally barren, philosophically vague, and such, as exercise in conceptual confusion and groping in the dark.
We have demonstrated that since independence to date, although there have been conceptual and doctrinal transitions in Nigeria foreign policy, in reality they are not grounded in deep philosophical thoughts, visionary imagination and broad-based considerations of long-lasting benefits to the national interests. Basically, there are borne out of programmatic exigencies, political faddism, conceptual elegance and regime identity. As a results Nigeria’s foreign policy fifty-five years down the road can be summed up to be change and continuity, motion without movement, dynamism without surge. What Nigeria need therefore is a foreign policy that will contain the crisis of under development, the challenges of poverty, leadership, political development, and a host of other maladies and launch her as a modern state in the twenty-first century in order to realize her full potentials and cravings for continental and global leadership.
Since independence, Nigeria foreign policy has been characterized by a focus on Africa and by attachment to several fundamental principles: Africa unity and independences peaceful settlement of disputes; non-alignment and non-intervention in the internal affairs of others nations; and regional economic cooperation and development. In carrying out these principles, Nigeria participates in the organization of Africa Unity (OAU), the economic community of West African States (ECOWAS), the Non-Aligned Movement and the United Nations.
Nigeria has maintained meaningful relation with governments of U.K, U.S, and other western powers. In November, 1999, Nigeria and the U.K agreed on a Joint Military Operations with training. Clearly, the past Nigerian government is committed to fundamental democratic principles and the return of political stability. To achieve this, Obasanjo is aligning himself with countries such as the U.K.
Although the continent of Africa has traditionally been the focus of Nigeria’s foreign policy for several decades, economic diplomacy is emerging as another significant priority. In this regard, Nigeria hopes to promotes economic co-operation with the global community. In pursuing the goal of regional economic cooperation and development, Nigeria helped create ECOWAS, which seeks to harmonize trade and investment practices for its 16 West African members countries and ultimately to achieve a full customs union. Nigeria also has taken the lead in articulating the views of developing nations on the need for modifying the existing international economic order in the context of the North-South dialogue (2011).
1.2 Statement of the Problem
The challenges before the nation’s economic managers is to put the economy on the path of competitiveness and strengthen it to participate effectively and compete favourably within the global system. The government should update the infrastructure, improve access to telecommunication and stabilize power supply, corruption and inefficient monopolices must quickly give way, through privatization and liberalization to private sector participation. Social investment on education and health must be stepped up in order to create a pool to skilled workers who will utilize the country’s abundant resources and return it to the path of prosperity.
The new process of globalization being facilitated by information and communication technologies had set in motion new dynamics of development. On its own part government should recognize that to achieve competitiveness and ensure the efficient allocation of resources, the growth and development of the Nigerian economy must be anchored on the global economy to meet challenges of globalization (2002).
Since the advent of the president Yar’Adua administration on 29th May, 2007, Nigeria’s foreign policy has been largely characterized by a re-definition of some of the principles guiding Nigeria’s international behaviour. One possible rationale for this might be as a result of public complaints that the impact of Nigeria’s foreign policy endeavours has generally not been felt by the ordinary Nigerians. Nigerian’s foreign policy assistance to other countries also has not always been appreciated but has always been marked by hostility and mistreated of innocent Nigerians the world over. Another possible reason also might be to protect the Nigerian interest in global politics. Whatever is the case, government has revisited the principles of reciprocity in Nigeria’s foreign policy, adopted a new attitude to official development assistance, introduced a new criterion for possession of Nigeria’s international passport, as well as reviewed the terms of production sharing contracts (PSCS, 2007).
Principle of Reciprocity
On the principle of reciprocity, Nigeria’s foreign minister, Chief Ojo Madueke, has announced that he would pursue citizen diplomacy that would also be guided by the rule of reciprocity: one main objective of the rule is to prevent the maltreatment of Nigerians abroad, reciprocity is good if, both in its sense of retorsion and reprisal, Nigeria has the means to sustain it, and more importantly, if Nigeria is ready to meet the challenges of counter reciprocity. Reciprocity is not a one-action phenomenon only. One action begets another. The major problem here is that, it is not only the Europeans, Americans etc., that maltreat Nigerians, the maltreatment of Nigerians by some African States (Liberia, Gabon, South Africa, etc.) is more notorious. In many cases, Nigerians themselves act in ways that warrant mistreatment, and thus making it difficult for government to retaliate on their behalf. In many others, such mistreatment was unwarranted. In this latter case, however, there is again the problem of determining whether to allow a single act of mistreatment to jeopardize other overall national interests at stake in the country that has maltreated one or some Nigerians). Thus, the application of reciprocity must be cautions and not generalized (2007).
Wherefore, what then is to be done to avoid complete marginalization and a possible position of Africa in the face of failure of policy which is causing the rest of the world considerable concern. This concern arises not out of altruism but because of constant breakdown of law and order in Africa and attendant immigration of refugees from the continent to other parts of the world. In recent times, we have seen the phenomenon of disappearing states like Somalia, and Liberia not to mention Rwanda and Burundi even Nigeria is being described by such some important news mediums as the America’s Washington past as a “failed state” when a state is branded a “rogue state” or a “failed state” such a state is a fair game for adventurist imperialistic powers.
Nigeria must first of all confront her domestic problem. The fundamental problems here is military dictatorship. We must transit from this to democracy. Democracy is not just the question of holding periodic elections, important as this is, it means developing a democratic culture underpinned by the rule of law. We must build an egalitarian society with careers being opened to talents. It should be possible for any Nigerian of talents to rise to any position that these talents entitle him. The present politically expedient policy of federal character which has been misused should yield place to open competition. This is the only way by which the sense of patriotism will be fostered. There is at present a feeling in some parts of the country that this republic is not based on equality of its citizen. Such feelings would have to be assuaged through practical sharing mechanism. The alternative to building a united country is too ghastly to be contemplated.
Finally, the worst foreign minister Nigeria ever had was Tom Ikimi, then of the AC, who served under General Abacha. A successful architect, he was totally out of his depths in the foreign ministry. He was so inept that professor Gabriel Olusanya once publicly dismissed his foreign policy as ‘area boys’ diplomacy. He stepped on virtually all foreign toes and left the foreign image of Nigeria in total disrepute. His personal style was far too abrasive and combative. At the foreign level, he was so oblivious of implications for Nigeria’s external image of the execution of the Ogoni four, including Ken Saro-wiwa that Nigeria had to be suspended from the common wealth of nations, of which a Nigerian, Chief Emeka Anyaoku, was the Secretary General.
1.3 Objectives of the Study
The main purpose of this study is to investigate globalization and its impacts on Nigeria’s foreign policy: Specifically:
i. To examine the impact of Globalization in Nigeria’s foreign policy.
ii. To identify the reason why globalization has impacted into Nigeria’s foreign policy.
iii. To investigate the role played by globalization into Nigeria foreign policy.
iv. To examine the relationships between globalization and its impact on Nigeria’s foreign policy.
1.4 Research Questions
i. What impact is globalization to Nigeria foreign policy?
ii. What is the relationship between globalization and Nigeria’s foreign policy?
iii. What role does globalization play Nigeria’s foreign policy?
iv. What is the relationship between globalization and its impacts on Nigeria’s foreign policy?
1.5 Significance of the Study
The findings of the study will enable the government of Nigeria to provide solutions to the identified globalization impacts on Nigeria’s foreign policy. While we seek better and closer ties with the superpowers, we should in equal measure seek close ties with emerging powers who may provide a better opportunity for ‘equal exchange’ and can facilitate in reversing the deindustrialization process and promote technological acquisition than the past fifty five years and which have left us largely unindustrialized and technologically backward. In this regard, Nigeria has to walk or rather run on several legs, improve agricultural production through the intervention of science and technology, produce technology for the production of intermediate goods and capital goods. In the ends, employing the irons and steels industries, including the machine tool industry to upgrade industrial capacity will propel Nigeria into the club of an industrialized nation and progressively move it from a net importer to exporter of technologies and industrial goods.
1.6 Scope and Limitation of the Study
The study tends to investigate globalization and its impacts on Nigeria foreign policy. Using Shomolu local government as a case study. The study will be conducted in Shomolu where the participants who were civil servants and private workers would participate in the study. The study made used of structural information either from textbooks or internet. An intensive review of literature in libraries and textbooks were the main source of gathering information that is required. This research work is limited to information data made available by the participants and the limited time schedule to sample all working-class people in Shomolu local government area of Lagos. Time is a major factor to the researcher as research of this kind requires enough time in gathering of data but time was given to carry out the research. The study is limited to some selected people who are government workers and private workers in Shomolu area.