Account for the coming of the Military into Nigerian politics in 1966?


  • Regionalization Of Political Parties: One
    of the causes of army take – over of government
    in Nigeria was the regionalization of political
    parties. The political parties tha existed in Nigeria especially during the
    first republic were regionally based. None of them
    had a broad national outlook and
    as a result they leaned on their various ethnic groups order to get support. This fanning of embers
    of ethnic consciousness proved injurious to the nation hence, the taking over of government by the military in
    order to save tr nation from imminent cataclysm. 
  • Desire To Control The Federal
    Politics, especially ethnic politics by nature, generates
    conflicts of varying magnitudes with consequences of different complexities.
    The desire to control the centre engendered ethnic
    political competition because, the politicians view the control of the Federal Government by any
    political party, as automatic control by the ethnic group where the party was
    rooted. This will afford them the opportunity to share and get more of the national cake. This acrimonious
    ethnic politics competition attracted the army
    who acted as unbiased umpire. 
  • Tribalising And Politicizing The
    The Nigerian army ‘ the
    first republic was tribalised and politicized. The army V used by the politicians to achieve what they
    failed to achieve through the ballot boxes. 
  • Corrupton And Nepotism: Large
    scale corruption and nepotism that pervaded the first
    and second republics, played a
    major role in the military intervention in politics in Niger! Corruption and
    nepotism took the form of looting of public treasury,
    parading of ill-gotten wealth before the hungry and-toiling masses, the appointment and
    promotion of civil servants and distribution of amenities based on ethnic
    factors, etc. The above evils prepared the stage and acted as open invitation
    for military intervention in Nigeria’s body polity. 
  • Economic Mismanagement:
    The military comes to power with
    the hope of righting the economic wrongs done by the civilians. The civilians embarked on
    prestigious and economically
    unviable projects with the aim of getting “ten percent” all these ruined the
    economy and invited the khaki boys to power.
  • Mal-Administration: Bad administration in Nigeria has contributed to frequent coups that
    occurred in the country. Many square pegs
    who found themselves in round holes through ethnic’support failed to
    administer the country very well hence the intervention of the military. 
  • Foreign
    The frequent coups we have experienced in Nigeria nay Africa
    had foreign influence as contributing  factors. The so – called big powers support
    and even sponsor the removal of any administration that fails to dance to their whims
    and caprices. 
  • Influence
    Of Other Coups:
    Coups on African continent tend ,to be infectious. Despite
    the prevailing conditions at the time coup d’etat took place, Nigeria’s first coup was
    mainly influenced by the coup of
    January 1966 in the Central African Republic
    which ushered in Colonel Jean Bokassa, as
    well as the Colonel Lamizana putsch in Upper Volta now Burkina Faso on January
    4, 1966.

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