International Journal of Humanities and Social Science

ISSN 2220-8488 (Print), 2221-0989 (Online) 10.30845/ijhss

Social Welfare and the Niger Delta Conflict
Temidayo David OLADIPO, Ph.D

The position argued for in this paper is that the use of social welfare in tackling the pangs of poverty, engendered by environmental degradation, is crucial to addressing and resolving the Niger Delta crisis. Although there have been various attempts to address the conflict by the Nigerian government, yet these attempts have not assuaged the belligerents in the region. Past attempts to resolve the conflict include: increased financial allocation to the region, creation of states, establishment of institutions that will attend to development issues peculiar to the area, and the use of the military to quash rebellion. However, as laudable as these approaches have been they have not prioritised tackling poverty. Arguments are thus presented in this article for the need to see chronic poverty as the root cause of the conflict. The provision of social welfare: affordable housing units, good health facilities, education and other social amenities will cushion the effect of poverty and will calm the aggrieved people of Niger Delta since a major cause of their agitation is the inability to afford certain needs essential for enhancing personal dignity and making life meaningful. Achieving this will enable the government to justifiably separate between criminal activities in the region and just agitations for minimum conditions for survival.

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