A former United States ambassador to Nigeria, John Campbell (L), and a former director of Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government, Prof. Robert Rotberg (R), have said it is time for the United States to recognize Nigeria as a failed state.
Campbell and Rotberg say this is because of the numerous security threats that afflict the country.
An article titled, “The Giant of Africa is Failing,” was published in the May/June issue of Foreign Affairs.
They both stated that insecurity now threatens the nation’s corporate survival in every part of Nigeria.
Nigeria’s global partners, especially the United States, should acknowledge that Nigeria is now a failed state. As a result, they need to deepen their engagement with Nigeria and hold the government accountable for its failure, as well as work with it to maintain safety and prosperity.”
Security agents have not been able to curb crime because criminals in the country are known to possess sophisticated weapons, according to Campbell and Rotberg.
They also talked about the Buhari Administration, stating that it had moved from a weak to a failed state.
President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration has struggled to quell numerous Jihadi insurgencies, including the militant group Boko Haram, under overlapping security crises that have transformed Nigeria into a failed state.
According to the duo, the federal government has given up in some areas and non-state actors have taken over while quasi-police agencies and militias controlled by state governments are more common.
According to the authors, several schools had been forced to close because of kidnappings and other crimes.
According to the article, regional quasi-police forces and militias, which typically have no formal sanction, exercise de facto control in some areas, while the federal authorities have successfully ceded management to militants and criminals.
According to Campbell and Rotberg, most failed states in Africa, such as the Central African Republic, Somalia, and South Sudan, are small or marginal, whereas Nigeria boasts a population of over 200 million people and could be the third largest country on Earth by 2050.
Campbell and Rotberg noted that happenings in Nigeria also impact other parts of Africa.
According to the article, Nigeria is too dependent on oil and regularly faces economic disasters.
The authors concluded: “However, the Nigerian state has long failed to provide its residents with social services, and Nigerian politics is essentially an elite sport disassociated from governance.
“Federal government does not or cannot tax the true wealth of the nation, relies too heavily on income from oil and gasoline, and lurches from one fiscal disaster to the next. Corruption is structural, too, effecting nearly everyone as perpetrator or victim.”
According to the authors, the US should assist Nigerian civil society and non-governmental organizations in their efforts to strengthen Nigeria’s democracy by coordinating conferences, issuing technical recommendations, and using other mediums of “comfortable diplomacy.”