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This study investigates good governance and conflict resolution in Anambra state, with an emphasis on the Umuleri and Aguleri communities’ experiences. Both communities were embroiled in unresolved disputes over possession of Otuocha territory.

Aside from the property dispute, both communities have been reconstructing their histories, with each claiming to be Eri’s direct descendants. The research uses a qualitative evaluation method.

The research primarily relies on primary and secondary sources. The study hypothesised that excellent governance is a crucial component of conflict resolution.

The study’s findings revealed that excellent governance fosters peace in Nigerian policy and may be achieved by transparency and accountability, respect for the rule of law, prudent resource management, and rigorous adherence to the idea of federal character in appointments.

It also discovered that strong governance is essential for peace, security, and sustainable development. The research, among other things, suggests that the current administration should try to overcome this vast gap by demonstrating genuine political will in resolving mistrust, revitalising the economy, and successfully addressing residents’ development needs and ambitions.

Chapter one


1.1 Background for the Study

The World Bank Report (2010) defines governance as the use of political power to manage a country’s affairs. This definition thus implies that governance includes the state’s institutional and structural arrangements,

decision-making processes, and implementation capacity, as well as the relationship between the ruling apparatus and the governed, i.e. the people in terms of their standard of living.

In his study, Odock (2011) defines “good governance” as “a system of government based on good leadership, respect for the rule of law and due process, the accountability of the political leadership to the electorate as well as transparency in the operations of government” .

Odock defined transparency as the leadership carrying out government business in an open, easy-to-understand, and explicit manner, such that the rules made by the government, the policies implemented by the government, and the outcomes of government activities are easily verifiable to ordinary citizens.

Accountability, as a component of good governance, refers to the reality that persons in positions of leadership in government must account for themselves or submit to the wishes and desires of the society and people they lead.

Unfortunately, material is not available in the public domain in Nigeria. Governance often emphasises leadership, which refers to how political leaders, i.e. the state apparatus, use or misuse authority to promote social and economic progress or to engage in agendas that largely impede the realisation of people’s good things in life.

Good governance is synonymous with democratic governance, which is defined by high-value ideals such as the rule of law, accountability, participation, transparency, and human and civil rights. These governance attributes have the potential to facilitate a country’s growth process.

Onifade (2011) has raised an important question of whether it is possible to have excellent governance without good leadership. Our understanding of reality indicates that the former is logically derived from the latter since effective and efficient leadership is invariably associated with excellent governance.

In his seminal book, ‘The Trouble with Nigeria’, Achebe (1983) argues convincingly that the inability of leadership to rise to its responsibilities, to the demands of personal exemplary life, clearly demonstrates why the nation has a problem with authentic leadership.

Theoretical explanations have been advanced by such scholars as Migdal (1988) and Zartman (1995) about the fact that in the absence of This has been the experience of most African countries, including Nigeria, where lead governance has prevailed.

A state is ideally intended to be an organisation made up of various agencies headed and coordinated by the state leadership (executive authority), with the capacity and authority to set and enforce rules for all people, including the use of force if required to achieve its goals.

According to Zartman (1995), a state is considered unsuccessful or collapsed when it fails to serve its roles as a sovereign authority, decision-making institution, and security guarantor for its population. This has the potential to destabilise structure, authority (legitimate power), law, and political order.

On the other hand, fighting has become an unavoidable part of human existence. Conflict will continue to exist in society as long as individuals and groups have social interactions. Although conflict frequently sparks social development, its violent form is destructive and undermines societal progress, increasing poverty and chaos.

There is no doubt that violent conflict has played havoc on our community and national social fabrics since 1999, especially since Nigeria’s elective democracy was established.

Micronationalism, ethnic, religious, and communal disputes exacerbate Nigeria’s underdevelopment, posing a significant threat to peace, security, and growth.

The crises had closed the barriers to friendship, engagement, and rapport amongst the country’s diverse ethnic groups. As a result, attempts to promote peaceful coexistence among the nation’s numerous identities become contradictory, if not elusive, as diverse ethnic, religious, political, economic, and social catastrophes continue to occur in the polity.

This has exacerbated insecurity in Nigeria’s fragile federal structure, which has faced massive ethnic, religious, and political upheavals over the years. The most severe of these have been communal confrontations across the country.

The regular occurrence of war in Nigeria in recent years poses a threat not just to democracy but also to the country’s corporate existence as a political unit.

Good governance is an essential component in promoting peaceful coexistence in society because it includes the rule of law, human rights protection, free and fair elections, accountability, an independent court of law, and the creation of an environment conducive to socioeconomic development (AbdulMaleek 2011).

As a result, the purpose of this study is to assess the relationship between good governance and conflict occurrence, with a focus on the Aguleri and Umuleri conflicts.

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