n Ubuntu : Journal of Conflict and Social Transformation - Representative government and the political economy of Nigeria's fourth republic

Volume 4, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 2078-760X
  • E-ISSN: 2050-4950


Following the military to civilian transition in 1999, Nigeria had four civilian to civilian transitions between 2003 and 2015. The system still leaves much to be desired. In spite of its democratic claims, corruption, infrastructural deficit, rising poverty, and institutional inadequacies still persist in Nigeria. While democracy ushered in relative freedom and considerable exercise of civil rights, it has fallen short of citizen expectations on the economic fronts - thus, resulting in hopelessness and general youth restiveness. The populace has endured disappointments from representative institutions, which seem to be faltering in guaranteeing improved life chances for most people. The widespread institutional failure amidst allegations of non-judicious use of public funds underscores the desirability of a paradigm shift to enhance good governance. This paper interrogates Nigeria's Fourth Republic, 1999-2015, with the objective of establishing the nexus between institutional effectiveness and democratic consolidation. Leveraging on library and archival searches, it calls attention to the desirability of virile representative institutions and active government-citizens engagement in the nation's renewed bid to engender popular participation. The paper reiterates that the various structures of the Nigerian political system, governmental and nongovernmental, and their well articulated roles and responsibilities are crucial in the consolidation of the representative content of the system of rule, and improvement in the well-being of the populace. This, therefore, calls for synergy and constructive engagements among all stakeholders beyond the extant statutory institutional checks and balances.

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