THREATS AND OPPORTUNITIES OF REGIONAL HEGEMONY: NIGERIA AND FRANCE IN WEST AFRICA

Deborah Oluwamayowa Ogabi, Sheriff Folami Folarin

Abstract


The paper examined the silent, but sometimes overt contest between Nigeria and France for hegemony and control in West Africa, and also identified the threats and opportunities that may be accrued to regional hegemony in West Africa. With the several interventions of Nigeria in West Africa, Nigeria remains an important regional player in the sub-region, thereby justifying the opportunities the country benefits from, in the course of its hegemonic adventures. The Classical Realism theory was adapted to the study in order to situate the role of national interests in the spectrum of inter-state relations. Data were gathered from existing literature, while analysis was done using textual methods. There is a strong belief that Francophone West African countries are tied to the apron-strings of their colonial masters, making it difficult for them to completely detach from such foreign influence and which Nigeria finds difficult to break in its quest to gain more influence in the region. The research concludes that the attainment of power attributes and regional acceptance can only be possible when Nigeria builds itself to an extent that it would be given proper recognition in the global system, through its constant focus on internal issues.


Keywords


France, Nigeria, Opportunity, Regional Hegemony, Threat, West Africa

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