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Early Warning System of Conflict Prevention Strategy in Nigeria

Arulogun, Caleb Feyisope
Department of Local Government and Development Studies, The Polytechnic, Ibadan PMB 22 UI PO, Ibadan.
Received: 06 May 2023; Revised: 23 May 2023; Accepted: 26 May 2023; Published: 26 June 2023

Abstract: – The entire globe is heated and faces immense annihilations that no single country can vouch to be truly free from. Though, conflict is an intrinsic and inevitable part of human existence, the nature and volatility of conflict experienced in Nigeria brought with it a quantum of warning signs which predominantly is not noticed or ignored. This study examines the Nigerian security sector as regards the disregard for available early warning signs of conflict in the polity which ordinarily form a whole ‘Early Warning System’ (EWS) of Conflict. The study employed historical method of analyzing data generated from both primary and secondary sources. A hundred key informants were systematically stratified and interviewed in each of six geopolitical zone of the country making total of 600 respondents while simple percentage frequency count and other statistical tools were used to analyze the derivatives in order to consolidate the mixed methodology. Findings show that significant early warning signs (EWS) precede most conflicts unawares and when the conflict signs are visible, we are not enlightened or informed to respond correspondingly let alone taking preventive actions. Also, government is complacent in the direction of conflict prevention policies and advocacy etc. The author therefore recommended an apt conflict prevention and management model which, if mainstreamed, would network all the security architectures hence, enhance security in the nation by fully engaging all the security operatives. It will ensure citizens’ rights and privileges while dignifying the nation in the international scene.

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Keywords: Conflict, Early warning signs, Security.

I. Introduction

The entire globe is under severe heat arising from unprecedented conflict trend which portends heinous danger to mankind and which threatens human extinction. It gets worse that the world is now getting attuned to armed conflicts cum collateral annihilation witnessed on a daily basis especially in the developing climes. In-spite of efforts by the international community and Africa regional intergovernmental ‘collective security’ organizations to maintain peace and security in Africa and to manage conflict and build peace, the continent lacks the ‘depth of relevant knowledge’ sustained capacity and critical mass of expertise for conflict prevention, management, resolution and peace building. (David 2007:4).

Nigeria’s plural context which is inherently conflicting being the general feature of several plural societies all over the world has attracted overwhelming concerns lately. Conflict issues in Nigeria has gone beyond counting numbers of occurrences or casualties owing to medium and large cases of conflicts reported daily and her current conflict rate which, ‘Global Peace Index’ ranked one of the highest in African sub region has been so unprecedentedly alarming to the point that certain individuals in the polity are calling for ‘Revolution Now’ (Sowore, 2019). However, we need to have a clear picture of what conflict is all about here as well as its nature. Conflict is the absence of peace at any given time. The absence of peace in the country invariably halts efforts at achieving meaningful development in all ramification. (Adamu and Tochukwu 2011; 65).

Quite naturally, ‘’humans exhibit differences not only biologically or physiologically but also socially and psychologically. Even identical twins who may be very much alike physically develop different personalities and orientations as they grow and live together and perceive assets or development resources as well as socio-economic problems differently’’ (Otite, 1999; 121). Therefore, differences between individuals and groups are natural and not mutually exclusive of social variables but the divergent perception and manipulations or exploitative tendencies of people with reference to scarce resources at the disposal of individuals or group advantages are products of diverse interests of man. This is what necessitates social conflicts in Nigeria today.