UNIVERSITY OF BRADFORD
TITLE OF PROPOSAL
Popular struggles for Democracy: Civil Society and Democratisation in Nigeria
Usman Alhaji Tar
Dr Janet Bujra
I certify that this essay is my own work and that it respects the ethical conventions of research and the due acknowledgement of the ideas and writings of others. The essay is written in my own words except for direct quotations that are acknowledged in the References.
GENESIS OF THE RESEARCH
The oscillation between military authoritarianism and democratic rule has been one of the dominant features of many post-colonial states (Dare, 1989). In the context of Nigeria, years of military dictatorship have led to the struggle for its disengagement from the political domain leading to variety of transition-to-civil-rule programmes (Ihonvbere, 1996). The study of democratic transition in Nigeria became of particular interest since 1983 when numerous attempts at military disengagement could not yield the desired result (Mustapha, 1999:227). One of the interesting topics of research that emerged from Nigeria’s recent experience in military rule, especially after the cold war, is the role of domestic forces seeking to unseat dictatorship and install democratic rule (Ikelegbe, 2001a, 2001b,).
This research proposal owes its influence to two broad factors. The first factor has bearing with the theoretic incentive for further enquiry borne by my previous research and reading of the literature on the topic. I did my masters degree research on democratisation and military disengagement in West Africa which revealed, among other things, that two causal factors -namely: internal and external- underpin the process of recent democratic transition in the region. The...