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Foreign Policy and Nigeria’s Domestic Environment: An Assessment

Gideon Yakubu,


This paper examines the impact of domestic environment on Nigeria’s foreign policy.Foreign policy is a reflection of domestic policies that are externally projected, which are fundamentally drawn from domestic aspirations and can be utilized as a potent force for positive international image.At Nigeria’s return to democratic rule in May, 1999, state actors came up with a new foreign policy direction to drive the country’s external relations in reaction to the prevalent domestic situation and international image of the country, the said goal found expression in shuttle diplomacy.In recent time, foreign policy making and implementation is influenced by a range of factors within the domestic environment. Thisstudyprimarily focused on the impact of some domestic factors such as; economic viability, military strength, character of political leadership, political crises, domestic situation of the country and mass media on the conduct of Nigeria’s foreign policy.It adopted Decision-Making Theory as its theoretical framework while data collected were analysed qualitatively and was complimented by the use of semi-structured interview. The study discovered that insecurity, debt burden, political instability, military capability among others has undermined the conduct of Nigeria’s foreign policy andtherefore recommends the needfor Nigeria to re-define her foreign policy objectives by paying strategic attention to the domestic environment through need centered policy formulation and implementation. Keyword: Foreign policy, Domestic, Environment, Nigeria, International.

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