EFFECTS OF ELECTORAL VIOLENCE ON VOTER BEHAVIOUR IN NIGERIA (A CASE STUDY OF SOUTH WEST)

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Abstract

For several scores of years, Nigeria has earned an appellation for herself as a showcase of Africa’s democracy. Paradoxically, every journey towards such democratic experiment had been laden with electoral violence even since the colonial days. With the rebirth of African liberalism in the 1990s, electoral violence returned in a more frightening dimension. This paper examines electoral violence in the 2007 and 2011 elections in Nigeria.

This research project is thus a search for the effect of electoral violence on Nigerian democracy.

Chapter one of the study lays an introduction for subsequent chapters. Following the background of the study, the problem statement and the objective of the study which provided basis for the significance of the study and the hypothesis were stated. The limitations of this study were also highlighted.

In the literature review as contained in chapter two, works of various authors, international and local journals were reviewed to elicit views on the effect of electoral violence on Nigerian democracy.

Chapter three, research methodology, description of population and sampling procedure for data collection were discussed. Methods of questionnaire design, determination of sampling size and questionnaire distribution were also highlighted.

Chapter four was based on analysis of data collected. This chapter was sub-divided into data analysis, hypothesis testing and summary. Percentage table, figure and narration were carefully employed for proper understanding and testing of hypothesis.

Finally, chapter five was divided into summary of findings, recommendation and conclusion.

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1      Background of the Study

The insignificance activities, sequel to the attainment of political independence in the 1960 in Nigeria were indeed inimical to the expectations of the great nationalists, who took the pain to secure the political independence.

According to Coleman (1958), the emergent politics that rolled down to the path of electoral engineering in Nigeria from the wake of independence wore the aura of infirmity. Albeit such derailment became highly influential in the post-colonial era, the events that took place in the late 1940s, especially the formation of ethnic-based political parties offered much to the new development. Since the inception of election, elections in Nigeria democratic experience, the country have continued to endure turbulent electoral atmosphere with accompanying tension, the heightened tension created by competition for public offices has exacerbated existing conflict and also created new ones.

Bieneu (1968) maintained that the resultant problems manifested in all spheres of Nigeria’s social, economic and political life, thus giving impetus to electoral violence. To this effect, electoral violence is therefore studied in its multiple dimensions. Such endemic trend have in fact, manifested itself as a monumental phenome

1.2   Statement of the Problem

This study is an attempt to investigate the effect of electoral violence on Nigerian democracy between 2007-2011, this is because, some of the elections conducted in Nigeria recently are said to be massively rigged couple with electoral violence and fraud across the states of Nigeria.

Electoral violence as a social phenomenon which has largely prevailed in our political system is a trend which government must attempt to control if not completely abated. This study is therefore born out of the realization of the apparent invincibility of electoral violence in Nigeria.

EFFECTS OF ELECTORAL VIOLENCE ON VOTER BEHAVIOUR IN NIGERIA (A CASE STUDY OF SOUTH WEST)