Hate Speech and Oil Politicking in the Niger Delta

Saturday, 21 July 2018: 09:15
Oral Presentation
Gloria OGUNGBADE, Covenant University, Nigeria
Moses DURUJI, Covenant University, Ota Ogun State, Nigeria
Ogaba OCHE, Nigerian Institute of International Affairs, Nigeria
The discovery of crude oil in Nigeria is one that has further buttressed the paradox of the ‘resource curse hypothesis’- which implies a negative association between natural resource-abundance and economic growth, that is, a situation where a particular region is rich in natural resources but ironically lacks the economic and social development that should be synonymous with such area. This discovery is said to bring untold hardships to the people of the region where it is discovered more than blessing. Competition for oil wealth has fueled violence between ethnic groups, the government and International Oil Corporations (IOCs) operating in the region resulting in the militarization of nearly the entire region by ethnic militia groups, Nigerian Military and police forces. This militarization is said to have led to protests and agitations against the government and IOCs and by extension other ethnic groups also giving rise to several layers of voices of discontentment which has been described as hate speeches. This paper interrogates the appropriateness of the labeling of public addresses by ethnic group as hate speeches and the politics involved in oil exploration in the Niger Delta.