Britain’s Political Mistake in Nigeria,Not Amalgamation

Many Nigerians blame Britain’s amalgamation for the country’s sorry tale , especially when they hear a tribalist-explosive case on the news.

At First, we usually blame Britain for colonialism, now, we blame them for amalgamation.

Why did Britain join us together? Why did Lugard join the North and the South? This is the question many Nigerians keep asking, blaming the amalgamation for the state of Nigeria.

I am not advocating that we must be one because I am of the opinion that a federation that doesn’t promote love, guarantee equality and promotes unity will eventually give way socially, and finally, politically, to secession.

I am only analysing the root-cause of the systemic political failure in Nigeria.

First Governor of Nigeria
Lord Lugard, first Governor of Nigeria

I will be honest with you, the political mistake of Britain is not in the amalgamation of Nigeria.

The mistake was in the making of a Nigeria without a proper setting, the British identified that the then Northern, Western and Eastern Regions couldn’t work together in a unitary setting, they opted for a federal structure with the Richards, MacPherson and Lyttelton constitutions (1946-1954).


But they didn’t enable nationalism at the centre, they left political power at the regional levels, and this brought forth tribalist politics which to those politicians could have thought of as “charity begins at home”….Funny right?

I hope you are following.

Britain’s mistake doesn’t seem to be in the amalgamation but in the left faulty framework—-VisionaryDemola

Britain shouldn’t have left political parties with regional colouration to contest federal political positions! It is like you select 3 pupils from 3 classes and you want one to represent the school, if the classes

Britain could have experimented an independent Nigeria, first by creating a one-party structure Chief Awolowo, Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe, Chief JS Tarka, Alhaji Ahmadu Bello and all other 1st Republic politicians and statesmen would have had a one-roof, one-family environment first.

Or better still, only federal parties without any regional colouration should have been allowed to contest federal elections.

Sir Bello, NPC Leader

Northern Peoples Congress= Northern People in majority.

Action Group= Western People in membership (majority)

Chief Awolowo, Action Group Leader

National Convention of Nigerian Citizens= Eastern people in membership.

Dr Azikiwe, NCNC Leader

This meant that each party was naturally more inclined to “my regional people first” except for personal idiosyncracy which some of these first republic politicians displayed, notable among them is Chief Awolowo and you will find out evidences in the next episode.

Now, sadly, the parties that clinched federal power and their leaders didn’t seem to have a

So what happened?

With NPC in the Federal Government, it will be Northern People (majority membership) in the name of the Northern people (sectional name), with NCNC in Federal Government, it will be Eastern people (majority membership) in the name of Nigeria (non-sectional name); with Action Group it connotes Western people (majority membership) in the name of Nigeria ( non-sectional name).

There were other parties too but these 3 were the major ones.

Tribalism became the order of the day and mediocrity set in, constructive criticism and opposition to federal maladministration was viewed as emnity.

So it was not the union that caused problem, especially the end of Nigeria’s first republic, it was the setting, the structure.

There was no structure——it was a union without progressive unity.

The regional partisanship at a federal mechanism spelled disaster! No wonder 7 years after the British left in 1960, Nigeria’s foundation was collapsing..

It means it has been collapsing all the while from 1960.

Therefore I will advise all Biafran Youths, Oduduwa Youths and all Nigerian Youths as a whole that we should restructure Nigeria first before leaving Nigeria.

Nigeria is not only a country of Hausa, Yoruba, Igbo and others…it is a relationship and we have to determine the bounds and limits of that relationship in a way that benefits all and doesn’t harm one

The present state of the Nigeria is what is making many feel that Nigeria should break, for them it means freedom but it is an unknown freedom to be honest, Nigeria can be free from political unequal and failure and blossom as a country that supports the dream of the Hausa,the Igbo, the Yoruba and others.

I just wanted to use this medium to reach out to Nigerian Youths who had given up on the possibility of the betterment of Nigeria.

Subscribe not to miss out on the next episode of this series called the Nigeria, we will be examine the 1966 military coup that turned the bearings of Nigeria’s political compass.

Article by VisionaryDemola
I am a politics blogger, a policy analyst and a political commentator.
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