Nigeria, France and the Francophone States: the Joy and Anguish of a Regional Power

Omole, Bamitale (2010-05-25)

Lecture

To interrogate this Inaugural Lecture, which is entitled "Nigeria, France and the Francophone States: The Joy and Anguish of a Regional Power", I propose to do three things. First, I will examine grosso modo, the concept of power not in the form of an abstraction, but in relation to and in the context of its nexus between Nigeria and the French-speaking states neighbours of West Africa of Benin Republic, Niger, Cameroon, Togo Chad, Cote d'lvoire, Senegal and indeed, on one or two non-Francophone states of West Africa whose diplomatic foray impinge on the relationship between Nigeria and the Francophone states of West Africa. Secondly, I will like to examine Nigeria's claim as a regional power. Is the claim an illusion of grandeur or a Leviathan rhapsody? What really over the years have been the joy and anguish of Nigeria in her diplomatic engagement and relations with the Francophone countries of West Africa? If truly Nigeria's action and inaction with the neighbouring states in the sub-region have rendered her diplomatically inconsequential, then what do we do with this Leviathan with clay legs?

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