Publication:
ELECTION VIOLENCE AND NATIONAL SECURITY: NIGERIA IN PERSPECTIVE

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Authors
Shehu, Kamaruddeen
Subjects
election violence
national security
INEC
security agencies
Nigeria
Advisors
Matei, Cristiana
Halladay, Carolyn C.
Date of Issue
2024-03
Date
Publisher
Monterey, CA; Naval Postgraduate School
Language
Abstract
Nigeria’s history of electoral violence threatens its democratic stability and national security. The recurring bloodshed across republics reflects entrenched drivers like ethnic tensions, youth unemployment, godfatherism, and institutional deficiencies. This research examines the critical roles of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and security agencies in mitigating electoral unrest and upholding integrity during polls for a stable democracy. The study adopts a qualitative case study approach relying primarily on scholarly articles, reports, and policy documents analyzing these institutions and electoral reforms. While notable reforms occurred, ranging from legislating voting procedures to coordinating security platforms, systematic constraints persist. Partisanship, overburdened mandates, logistical failures, compromised neutrality, and legal uncertainties still enable manipulation and malpractices during elections. Ultimately, this fragility precipitates coups, conflicts, and instability, jeopardizing national security. Thus, reforms must address root deficiencies. Recommendations include streamlining INEC’s expansive duties, strengthening independence through decentralizing appointments, expanding civic education, and enhancing security agencies’ capacity.
Type
Thesis
Description
Department
National Security Affairs (NSA)
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Distribution Statement
Distribution Statement A. Approved for public release: Distribution is unlimited.
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