Conflict and Distortion in Resource Utilization and Peace-Building in Kogi State, Nigeria

Ibrahim, Mohammed Nasiru ; Ahmed, Abdullateef (2021)


Conflict always generates insecurity. Peace scholars recognise conflict as a non-economic factor that impacts negatively on economic growth and development. The conflict escalated by resource control is prevalent partly because of multiple and competing demands for resources. In Nigeria, various conflicts among interest groups in different parts of the country attract national discourse because they impact negatively on the nation’s security. This study investigates the causes of conflict provoked by resources and the attendant peacebuilding efforts in Kogi State and the nation at large. The paper’s main objective is to create a sustainable and peaceful way forward. Data were generated from primary and secondary sources through Key Informant Interviews (KII), and a structured questionnaire administered in six randomly-select local governments, namely: Abejukolo, Bagana, Bagaji, Akpacha, Icheke, and Ofejiji. This study used Peacebuilding Theory. Qualitative and quantitative analyses were done. Findings reveal that conflict precipitates the destruction of human lives; causes humanitarian crises such as internally displaced persons (IDPs); creates extensive damage to physical and agrarian structures; causes disruption of psychological well-being; breakdown of law and order, among other negative outcomes. A major proposition of this study is that peace-building mechanisms should be instituted and managed by all stakeholders because non-state actors in conflict theatres sometimes allow grievances to smoulder because of fear, distrust, peer pressure, financial constraints, exclusion from certain conflict resolution procedures, or for strategic reasons.