In this paper I intend to do at least three things: 1) discuss the political and economic characteristics of Nigeria and compare them to the characteristics of another second tier country as classified by Snow and Brown, 2) present evidence that helps determine the prospect for Nigeria to either move up into a higher second sub tier group, or remain in the same group, and 3) Discuss the effects it would have on international relations if Nigeria were or were not to move. Due to the terrible history of the state and its current condition I do not predict that Nigeria will move up into the Developed sub-group within the next few years, but I do believe it is possible if they get their government and economy in balance.
Nigeria is a partially developed state in Africa. It has a population of about 126,635,626 people and over 250 ethnic groups. Nigeria is the world's fifth largest producer of crude oil from which comes 90 percent of its foreign exchange earnings. The development of oil resources has led to much corruption, conflict, environment devastation, and poverty, which is currently experienced in Nigeria. This state is a former British colony that achieved its independence on October 1, 1960. Due to inter ethnic power struggles the country was involved in many civil wars. Up until May 1999 Nigeria has been under military dictatorship (Adebariwi). Nigeria has had a history of political instability, which goes as far back as the pre-colonial period (around 1700's). I would say it really began when Fulani Islamic clerics forced the spread of Islam on Nigerians. Islam taught its followers to use war and violence as a tool to spread the religion. Even during the colonial period many of the southern Nigerian groups disagreed with the political structure and began to riot and commit other acts of disobedience. The only way the north could sustain its dominance was through the army and police (Ejiogu).