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How Do Ethnic Militias Perpetuate in Nigeria? A Micro-level Perspective on the Oodua People’s Congress

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  • Yvan Guichaoua

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    (Queen Elizabeth House, University of Oxford)

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    Abstract

    The paper discusses the recently promoted view that organized insurgent violence should either be conducted by activists bonded together by social capital ties or self-interested quasi-mercenaries, depending on the type of financial resources available to the group. We contrast this perspective with the study of an ethnic Nigerian militia, the Oodua People’s Congress (OPC). It appears that the success of this militia over time was jointly sustained by important preexisting social connections and numerous opportunities for economic gains. The perpetuation of OPC, we argue, is ensured by a ‘moral economy’ whose members enjoy selfinsurance in an environment perceived as unsafe.

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    File URL: http://www.microconflict.eu/publications/RWP19_YG.pdf
    File Function: First version, 2009
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by MICROCON - A Micro Level Analysis of Violent Conflict in its series Research Working Papers with number 19.

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    Length: 41 pages
    Date of creation: 2009
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:mcn:rwpapr:19

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    Related research

    Keywords: Militias; Violent Mobilization; Extra-legal Governance; Security; Africa; Nigeria;

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

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    1. Avinash Dixit, 2003. "On Modes of Economic Governance," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 71(2), pages 449-481, March.
    2. Laurence Iannaccone & Eli Berman, 2006. "Religious extremism: The good, the bad, and the deadly," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 128(1), pages 109-129, July.
    3. Collier, Paul & Hoeffler, Anke, 1998. "On Economic Causes of Civil War," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 50(4), pages 563-73, October.
    4. Ehtisham Ahmad & Raju Jan Singh, 2003. "Political Economy of Oil-Revenue Sharing in a Developing Country: Illustrations from Nigeria," IMF Working Papers 03/16, International Monetary Fund.
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