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MILITIA UPRISING IN THE NIGER DELTA AND ITS IMPLICATIONS FOR NATIONAL SECURITY
Intractable violence has invariably constituted an enduring image of the Niger Delta Region of Nigeria. Despite extant initiatives for addressing the problem, it seems unsusceptible to management over the years by assuming varying dimensions, including hostage taking, sea piracy, political hooliganism, terrorism and vandalism of pipelines. This study identifies militia uprising as the fundamental driving force of violence in the region in view of the implications for development and security in Nigeria. Using qualitative research method, findings show that the militia uprising in the Niger Delta is not a mere display of rebellious acts against constituted authority, but a purpose-driven aggressive reaction to enduring social neglect and exploitative tendencies inflicted on that region and its people by successive activities of state and non-state actors. Using relational and frustration-aggression theories of conflict, the study submits that the subsisting reactionary measures by stakeholders, including amnesty programme cannot guarantee lasting peace and security required for sustainable development at the expense of problem-solving policy responses. Therefore, the study recommends comprehensive conflict transformation initiative for addressing militia uprising in the Niger Delta with a view to ensuring desired peace and security in the interests of sustainable development and national integration.
Keywords: Niger Delta Region; Enduring Social Neglect; Militia Uprising; National Security; Conflict Transformation; Sustainable Development; National Integration