n AFFRIKA Journal of Politics, Economics and Society - Crisis of governance, political leadership and the complicity of the ‘followership’ in Nigeria

Volume 9 Number 2
  • ISSN : 1998-4936
  • E-ISSN: 2075-6534


Despite the much-celebrated return to civil rule in 1999, effective governance continues to elude Nigerians. This is not only attributable to bad leadership; of greater concern is the conspiracy of the followership in the socio-economic and political debasement of the Nigerian state. This article takes a holistic approach to understand the role of political leadership, the responses of the citizens to the pressures generated by socio-economic reforms and the quest for good governance in Nigeria. The article relies on unstructured interviews to elicit the perspectives of stakeholders in Nigeria‘s governance project. The article found that the formation of the state and evolution of its nationhood, quality of its leadership, and the character of the followership has made it challenging for the Nigerian state to accumulate the dividends of democracy, align itself with the expectations of the masses and manifest the attributes of a true state. However, more pressing among these challenges is the crisis of leadership. The study concludes by reiterating the need for attitudinal changes in the nature and character of Nigerian leadership towards mobilization of the followership towards achieving public good.

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