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Politics of oil in Northern Nigeria and the intensification of dependency

Abstract

Goke Lalude (Ph.D)

The developed nations in the Northern hemisphere had close to an absolute control over the developing nations in the South in the economic and political fronts sometime for over a century. The relation of the South to the North for this considerable long period of time was therefore subordinate - super-ordinate, and was a relationship the North not only jealously guided but which was programmed to be a permanent feature in international relations. One can however assert that the power of oil gave the South a considerable leverage against the North and actions as well as the effort of the North at reducing the power indicated how much of a dilemma the oil issue had become to the developed nations. It can infact be asserted that a Northern reliance on a Southern power was at variance with the existing economic relations, one that is of immense benefit and advantage to the North and of almost a total disadvantage to the South. The Northern discomfort to the power that oil gave to the South is an illustration of how much of dilemma oil is to the North. This therefore explains efforts by the North, not only at various times but both collectively and individually to maintain the status quo. Certain steps have been identified by this work, not only as strategies by the North to considerably reduce if not totally eliminate the power of oil to Southern oil producers but as clear evidence of the dilemma that oil dependency represents to the North. It may be necessary to affirm at this stage that consistent efforts at checking the Southern control testifies to the very important fact that the North not only realises but equally appreciates the potential that oil is to the Southern developing nations. This therefore totally debunks impressions and positions in certain quarters that oil can hardly be used or utilised as a weapon against the North as efforts at maintaining the status quo are enough to indicate that the North is undoubtedly not comfortable with such a position.

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