Nigerians Role In The Development Of International Organization (case Study Of Ecowas)

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This research discussed the role of Nigeria in the formation of Economic Community of West Africa States (ECOWAS). Nigeria’s role in the process of forming ECOWAS is of interest for two reasons. First, it is probable that variables which explain the initiation of integration also explain its maintenance, in which case the role Nigeria played may give some insights into future behavior and the probable fate of the new institution. Secondary, Nigeria’s role is interesting in itself and offers some insights into the African diplomacy of a country said to be “on its way to becoming the first major black power in modern international politics”. This research is concerned with both issues. Nigeria’s commitment to West African economic integration goes back to the early 1960’s, the heyday of efforts to institutionalize the concept of  Pan-Africanism. One proposal for institutionalizing this concept was Nkrumah’s continental Union government or, at the very least, a political union of West African states. This proposal failed largely because Nigeria opposed it, while succeeding in getting a coalition of African states to support its stand.


Title page - -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        i        

Approval page -   -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        ii

Declaration -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        iii

Dedication -          -        -                  -        -        -        -        -        -        -         iv

Acknowledgement         -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        v

Table of contents -                   -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        vi

Abstract      -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        viii

Chapter One: Introduction

    1. Background of the Study  -        -        -        -        -        -        -        1       
    2. Statement of the Problem  -        -        -        -        -        -        -        5
    3. Objectives of the Study     -        -        -        -        -        -        -        6       
    4. Hypotheses                       -        -        -        -        -        -        -        7
    5. Significance of the study   -        -        -        -        -        -        -        7
    6. Scope of the Study            -        -        -        -        -        -        -        8                              

Chapter Two:

2.1 Review of Related Literature -    -        -        -        -        -        -        9

2.2 Statement of the problem  -        -        -        -        -        -        -        12

2.2.2 Genesis of ECOWAS     -        -        -        -        -        -        -        15

2.2.3 The Nigeria-Togo Initiative -    -        -        -        -        -        -        16

2.2.4 Reasons for Nigeria’s Role in the Formation of ECOWAS -   -        17

2.2.5 The Role of Nigeria in Economic Community of West African State (ECOWAS -       18

2.2.6 Problems and prospect of ECOWAS -        -        -        -        -        -        31

Chapter Three: Methodology

3.1 Methodology -                   -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        39

3.2 Theoretical Frame work    -        -        -        -        -        -        -        39

3.3 Research Design      -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        40

3.4 Method of Data Collection -                 -        -        -        -        -        -        41

3.5 Method of Data Analysis -          -        -        -        -        -        -        -        42

Chapter Four:

4.1 Nigeria dominant role in development of ECOWAS didn’t enhance

its economic growth  -   -        -        -        -        -        -        -        43

4.2 ECOWAS contributed to the security and growth of some member

states ECOWAS and the Sub-regional peacekeeping in Liberia  -    -        48

Chapter Five: Summary, Conclusion and Recommendations

5.1 Summary of Findings        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        76

5.2 Conclusion  -  -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        77

5.3Recommendations  - -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        78

References           -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        -        81                                                                                  




International organization is a membership group that operates across national borders for specific purposes. Scholars of international relations consider international organizations to be of growing importance in world politics. Examples of international organizations include the United Nations (UN), African Union, European Union, and (EU). Then League of Nations can be seen as the first international organization that was formed. Its first meeting was held in Geneva conference in 15 November 1920 with 42 nations present. The last meeting was held in April 8 1946. Then later UN superseded the league when it failed. UN was founded after World War II which ended in 1945. United Nations mission was to maintain World peace, develop good relations between countries, promote cooperation in solving the World’s problems and encourage respect for human right. Then league had many functions. As UN is an international organization in the global level we equally have regional organizations like AU, EU, and NATO and so on, so then we have sub regional organization, in sub regional we have ECOWAS, for West African states only.

International organizations according to Goldstein and Pevehouse (2009:232) is concrete, tangible, structure, with specific functions and missions. International organization can be define them as transnational organization most usually setup by charter, with mission and vision transcending one state and geared towards performing specific functions. In love with this Palmer (1985:298), argued that one of the promisingdevelopments of the nineteenth century in interstate relations has been the proliferation of international organizations. Archer (1983:35), added that every international organization must have hat is called irreducible characteristics which are broadly grouped into three, First, it must have a membership which must consist of two or more sovereign states Secondly, every international organization pursues the common interest of the members” and every organization must have its aims and objectives spelt out in its Constitution or Charter. Lastly, an international organization should have its own formal structure of a continuous nature established by an agreement such as a treaty or constituent documents. It is important to note that these organizations are created by sovereign states and can only do what these states empower them to do.. AN international organization is said to be supranational organization if it has an authority to make regulations that are binding on its member state.

According to Nwankwo (2002), international organization falls into two categories: IGO’S and NGO’S. Intergovernmental organizations (IGO’s), have national government as members. Apparently hundreds of IGO’s functions all over the world because member nations have created each of these organizations to serve a purpose that those nations find useful. The UN, OPEC, WTO, NATO are good example of’ IGO’s. The organization and political groupings, such as the Arab League and African Union, are also IGO’s. In general, regional IGO’s have experienced more success than global ones, and those with specific purpose have worked better than those with broad aim. Another type of international organization identified by Nwankwo is nongovernmental organizations (NGO’s). NGO’s are private organizations whose membership and activities are international oriented. NG’s do not possess the legal status of national governments. However, the UN and other international forums, recognize many NGO’s as important political institutions. Examples of NGO’s are Roman, Catholic Church, Greenpeace, the international Olympic committee. According to Abba (2010) the ECOWAS is an economic bloc formed to address the issue of economic exploitation of the West African states by the imperial and neo-imperial powers. The sub region (West Africa) was seen by the economic world power as a place where cheap raw materials could be sourced, after which they ‘dump their finished goods at exorbitant prices. ECOWAS was established to control these excesses, and to ensure strong and unfettered economic trade relations among member states. And it was championed by Yakubu Gowon (Nigeria) and the late Gnassiigbe Eyaderna (Togo). Article 2 of ECOWAS charter says that;

It shall be the aim of the community to promote cooperation, and development in all fields of economic activities particularly in the fields of industry, transportation, telecommunication, energy, agriculture natural resources, monetary arid financial questions and in social and cultural, matters for the purpose of raising the standard of flying of its people, of increasing and maintaining economic stability, of fostering the closer relations among its members, and of contributing to the progress and development of the African continent.

The main provision of ECOWAS treaty relate to the gradual abolition of customs duties among members the guarantee of free movement of persons and capital within the community This means that existing artificial economic barriers and preferential tariffs for local manufactures within the member states would gradually disappear. ECOWAS implies an integration of the economic policies and programs of the members and also a gradual indigenization of the ownership and control of capital in the sub-region. Toward this end, firms which are not both indigenously owned and controlled will be subjected to tariff discrimination in West African market. The goal is to ensure that West Africa control the economy of sub-region. The persistence search for an economic• union which will foster economic cooperation and provide a base for countries especially the former French colonies made the representatives of 15 West African countries to converge in Lagos and sign the treaty establishing the (ECOWAS) on May 27 1975. All the West Africa countries except Cape Verde Island signed the treaty which actually came into force on June 24, 1954 with the administrative and Economic (financial) headquarters in Lagos and Lorne respectively. Presently all the 16 West African countries of Benin(Dahomey) Burkina Faso(upper Volta) Cape Verde Island, Gambia, Ghana(Gold Coast) Guinea, Guinea —Bissau(Portuguese Guinea) Cote Devoir (Ivory coast) Liberia, Mali,( Sudan), Mauritanian, Niger, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Senegal and Togo are members of this community.

1.2 Statement of Problem

The Economic Community of West African states (ECOWAS), was formed on the 28 of May, 1954 in Lagos Nigeria. It was a sub-regional group of fifteen countries, formed with the aim of promoting cooperation’s and integrations that turn the political and cultural and economic growth anddevelopments among African state. Unfortunately alter many years of formation, ECOWAS member countries still see each other as strangers and they have never acted with one voice. Economically there has river been free flow of trade across borders in the sub-regional talk less of unilateral trade co-operations amongst member countries. It is very appalling that even at present, Nigeria can’t transact business Iii other West African countries like Ghana, Togo, ivory coast and so others without being harassed with stringent conditions /measures, and intimidated by official of these west African countries.

Also socio politically, it is heart rending that after many years of ECOWAS existence west-African unity and integration, still West African and their leaders have never really spoken with one voice. It is the, incessant political conflict and wars bedeviling most West African countries. With the above problem the researcher was faced with this questions

1. Did Nigeria dominant role in ECOWAS enhance its Economic growth in Africa?

2.  Has ECOWAS contributed in the ‘development and security of member states?

1.3 Objectives of the Study

The broad objective is to discuss if the effective roles Nigeria played in the development of international organizations, helped in the. Growth of its Economy.

And its specific objectives are

1. To investigate if the dominant role of Nigeria in forming ECOWAS enhanced its political and Economic position in West Africa

2. To ascertain whether ECOWAS has contributed 1:0 the develprnen1: of member states.

3. And lastly to proffer solution to problems o1 socio-political and Economic situation that is rising in Africa and especially in ECOWAS countries.

1.4 Hypotheses

1. Nigerian’s dominant role didn’t enhance its Economic position in Africa.

2. ECOWAS contributed to the security and development: o1 some member states and African nations

1.5 Significance of the Study

The study will serve as available materials for the sub-regional organizations and the international community at large. It will equally be of help to the international political analysts in general, Presidents and heads of states in African countries as they appreciate the need for African nations to stay strong, as well as the obstacles to its successful advancement, both within the ECOWAS sub-region and Africa in general. This study will help West Africa to appreciate the need to form sub-regional organization in order to address economic exploitation by imperialism and it will add to the existing knowledge to the field of economic relations

among member states. It willequally add to the existing knowledge in the field of international relations and African in general.

1.5 Scope of the Study

The basic aim of the study is to undertake an in depth study of ECOWAS and Nigeria. It will help us to ascertain the challenges Nigeria faced in developing international organizations.

However the study is delimited to ECOWAS, a West. African sub-regional organization within the years 2010-2015 as its major lime frame.

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