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  • Author: Oluwatoyin Oluwaniyi
  • Publication Date: 05-2018
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Social Science Research Council
  • Abstract: The end of the Cold War shifted the focus from international wars between states to internal wars with immense consequences for unarmed civilians, such as occurred in the African countries of Angola, Burundi, Central Afri- can Republic (CAR), Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Liberia, So- malia, and Sudan, to mention a few.1 The nature of these wars makes these countries susceptible to further wars. To avoid such conflict traps, peace- building measures such as disarmament, demobilization, and reintegration (DDR) have been introduced to pave the way for an easier transition from conflict to peace, by minimizing risks from ex-combatants as possible spoil- ers and, restoring hope and security to victims of conflict while developing their communities.2 Evidence from countries that have utilized DDR, such as Angola, DRC, So- malia, and Liberia, suggests that while disarmament and demobilization may be essential, reintegration remains the most critical component of post-conflict peace and security.3 Debate continues over the notion that while disarmament and demobilization entail short-term security opera- tions, they do not by themselves bring sustainable benefits; reintegration focuses on extensive long-term development efforts that are critical to avoiding the conflict trap and sustaining peace in the long run. Short-term security does not bring about sustainable benefits unless it is coordinated with long-term community development strategies. Reintegration address- es the economic and social transformation of both ex-combatants and the overall communities they are joining, yet the full implementation of this pro- cess is generally ignored in DDR programs in post-conflict countries. This paper focuses on the extent of implementation of the reintegration phase in the Niger Delta region’s post-conflict (usually called post-amnesty) period and its impact on peace, security, and development in the region. The Nigerian federal government embraced the post-amnesty DDR concept in June 2009 to set the pace for gradual resolution of the violence that had embroiled the region for almost a decade. During the execution of the disar- mament and demobilization phases, the Niger Delta region recorded initial progress in peace and security demonstrated by an increase in oil produc- tion from an estimated 700 barrels per day (bpd) to an estimated 2,500 bpd in early 2010. However, the implementation of the reintegration phase has raised several questions due to the region’s relapse into violence and crime. There is, therefore, a need to investigate the factors working against suc- cessful implementation of the reintegration process. A critical analysis of the process will enhance the understanding of schol- ars and policymakers alike on what constitutes sustainable reintegration and at the same time, how it may be achieved in post-conflict societies. The focus on reintegration is meant to facilitate a specific consideration of its importance as the point of intersection between short- and long-term peacebuilding processes.
  • Topic: Conflict, Peace, Reconciliation
  • Political Geography: Africa, Nigeria
  • Author: Jimam T. Lar
  • Publication Date: 03-2017
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Social Science Research Council
  • Abstract: This policy briefing note focuses on the role of local actors1 in conflict man- agement and peacebuilding in central Nigeria, and explores two issues: the problem of intractable conflicts and the potential for local actors to play a role in policy interventions aimed at conflict management. By focusing on local actors and their impact on prospects for peacebuilding in local conflicts, it reveals the need to draw lessons and best practices from local contexts to apply to regional and national conflict management policies and peacebuild- ing processes.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, Conflict, Local, Peace
  • Political Geography: Africa, Nigeria
  • Author: Godwin Onuoha
  • Publication Date: 06-2017
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Social Science Research Council
  • Abstract: This paper critically explores the nature of post-civil war peace in Nigeria since the end of the Nigeria-Biafra War in 1970. The context of this study is the recent emergence of neo-Biafran groups calling for the secession of the Igbo of Southeastern Nigeria from the federation, almost five decades af- ter secessionist Biafra was defeated and reabsorbed into Nigeria under the banner of national unity. Nigeria’s post-civil war nation-state peacebuilding project was framed around reconciliation, rehabilitation, and reconstruc- tion policies which shaped the nature of national citizenship, the “peace dividend,” and reintegration of the Igbo into a united Federal Republic of Nigeria. The failure of these policies has inevitably fueled lingering post- war memories. The construction of individual and collective memories of the war is intertwined with relations of power, inclusion, and exclusion. Ul- timately, while attempts at post-war reconciliation and national unity ap- peared to have eased opposing memories of the war in the public realm, group memories of “hurt,” “injustice,” and “marginalization” still flourished in the private realm—which consisted of kinship and family networks, town unions, and ethnic groups. Part of the focus of this paper is to examine the onnections between such ill feelings and the emergence of neo-Biafran groups within the country and in the diaspora that are evoking memories of, and nurturing the quest for, a “new” Biafra. As the mobilization efforts of the neo-Biafra groups gain increasing attention in Southeastern Nigeria, the problematic nature of Nigeria’s post-conflict peace, which has not com- pletely eliminated the risk of a relapse into conflict since 1970, is brought to the fore.
  • Topic: Civil War, Diplomacy, Nationalism, Citizenship, Memory, Peace, Reconciliation
  • Political Geography: Africa, Nigeria