Proposals for Equitable Governance and Management of Natural Resources in Nigeria

Z. Adangor


The current regime of centralized natural resource governance poses one of the greatest threats to the stability of the Federation of Nigeria. The centralization of natural resource ownership and government is perceived by the ethnic minorities of the oil-producing Niger Delta Region of Nigeria as a tool of ethnic domination by the majority ethnic groups. Given the centrality of natural resources to the growth of Nigeria’s economy and the desirability of maintaining a stable federation, this research seeks to propose an equitable regime of natural resource governance that recognises and accommodates both national and regional interest in Nigeria’s abundant natural resources and thereby strengthens federal stability. This paper which adopts analytical and comparative research methodologies, argues that the current regime of natural resource governance in Nigeria is divisive and that only the participation of the federating states in the governance of natural resources exploited within their respective geographic boundaries would conduce to peace and inter-regional harmony and enhance the capacities of the federating states to develop at their varying speed according to the dreams of the Founding Fathers of Nigerian federalism. The paper concludes by recommending resource federalism whereby competence over natural resource governance could be shared between the federal government and the federating states.

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International Law Research  ISSN 1927-5234  (Print)  ISSN 1927-5242  (Online)  Email:

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