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Rethinking Political Leadership and Neo-colonialism in Africa: Interrogating Nigerian Civil War and Global Politics

Udeoji, Ebele, ONUMONU Ugo P.,


Given the political atmosphere around the globe in the 1960s, the early post-colonial Africa was engulfed with the euphoria of African political thought. African leaders demonstrated the spirit of Pan-Africanism with high hope. However, due to lack of enduring sense of visionary leadership rooted in African indigenous knowledge, the former colonial masters began to explore the instrumentality of neo-colonialism which made African countries subservient to the global West. In this regard, the western world, during the period of Nigeria’s turbulence in 1966 which led to the civil war of 1967 to 1970, exploited the political misunderstanding in Nigeria. Countries like Britain, France, USSR and a host of others intervened in the crisis with their national interest firmly rooted in the crude oil discovered in Nigeria. The world Super Powers influenced the leadership of Nigeria negatively before and during the war. The pattern of influence of the western countries over Africa has been the same since the emergence of post-colonial era. This study, seeks to examine the influence of the western world on Africa through neo-colonialism with particular interest on Nigeria. Nigeria is yet to recover from such global politics, yet existing literature largely exclude this sub set of Nigerian civil war discourse. The study deploys historical-analytical method in interpreting secondary and primary sources. It is imperative, therefore, to begin to rethink neo-colonialism and African leadership. The study argues that the role of the western countries changed the entire political equation of Nigeria. Keywords: Africa, Neo-colonialism, Nigerian civil war, Leadership, Post-colonialism..

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