Oil and Insurgency in the Niger Delta

Managing the Complex Politics of Petro-violence

Edited by Cyril Obi and Siri Aas Rustad


This book examines the relationship between oil, energy security and development in the Niger Delta.
The recent escalation in the violent conflict in the Niger Delta has brought the region to the forefront of international energy and security concerns.

This book analyses the causes, dynamics and politics underpinning oil-related violence in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria. It focuses on the drivers of the conflict, as well as the ways the crises spawned by the political economy of oil and contradictions within Nigeria's ethnic politics have contributed to the morphing of initially poorly coordinated, largely non-violent protests into a pan-Delta insurgency.

Approaching the issue from a number of perspectives, the book offers the most up-to-date and comprehensive analysis available of the varied dimensions of the conflict. Combining empirically-based and analytic chapters, it attempts to explain the causes of the escalation in violence, the various actors, levels and dynamics involved, and the policy challenges faced with regard to conflict management/resolution and the options for peace. It also examines the role of oil as a commodity of global strategic significance, addressing the relationship between oil, energy security and development in the Niger Delta.

Author Bio

Cyril Obi is a Senior Researcher, and Leader, Research Cluster on Conflict, Displacement and Transformation at the Nordic Africa Institute, Uppsala, Sweden. His most recent book co-edited with Fantu Cheru, is titled: The Rise of China and India in Africa (Zed, 2010).

Siri Aas Rustad is a researcher at the Centre for the Study of Civil War at the Peace Research Institute Oslo.

Table of Contents

  • Introduction: Petro-Violence in the Niger Delta: The Complex Politics of an Insurgency - Cyril Obi and Siri Aas Rustad 
  • Part I: Causes of Conflict, State (In)capacities 
    • 1. The Nigerian State, Oil and the Niger Delta Crisis - Ukiwo Ukoha 
    • 2. Capacity and Governance Deficits in the Response to the Niger Delta Crisis - Babatunde A. Ahonsi
    • 3. The Struggle for Resource Control and Violence in the Niger Delta - Rhuks Ako 
    • 4. The Niger Delta Crisis and the Question of Access to Justice - Engobo Emeseh 
    • 5. The Ijaw National Congress and Conflict Resolution in the Niger Delta - Ibaba Samuel Ibaba
    • 6. Changing the Paradigm of Pacification: Oil and Militarization in Nigeria's Niger Delta - Charles Ukeje
    • 7. Nigeria's Oil Diplomacy and the Management of the Niger Delta Crisis - Kayode Soremekun 
  • Part II: Conflict Actors' Dynamics 
    • 8. 'Mend Me' the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta and the Empowerment of Violence - Morten Boås 
    • 9. Popular and Criminal Violence as Instruments of Struggle in the Niger Delta Region - Augustine Ikelegbe 
    • 10. Swamped with Weapons: The Proliferation of Illicit Small Arms and Light Weapons in the Niger Delta - Nils Duquet 
    • 11. Women's Protests in the Niger Delta Region - Oluwatoyin Oluwaniyi 
  • Part III: Oil MNCs' Responses 
    • 12. Corporate Social Responsibility and the Niger Delta Conflict: Issues and Prospects - Uwafiokun Idemudia 
    • 13. Labelling Oil, Contesting Governance: LegalOil.com, the GMoU and Profiteering in the Niger Delta - Anna Zalik 
  • Conclusion: Amnesty and Post-Amnesty Peace: Is the Window of Opportunity Closing for the Niger Delta? - Cyril Obi and Siri Aas Rustad


'Empirically rich and conceptually rigorous, this collection of essays is a tour de force.'
Michael Watts, University of California, Berkeley

'This book will quickly become required reading for both scholars and practitioners interested in untangling these complex threads in order to promote peace, democracy, and development in the Niger Delta, and in similar resource-driven conflicts as well.'
Darren Kew, Associate Professor, Conflict Resolution Program, University of Massachusetts

'An invaluable resource for understanding the complex and interrelated dynamics of violence, exploitation, resistance and social change in the region.'
Pambazuka News


Publication Date: 10 February 2011
272 pages

Product ISBNs: Paperback: 9781848138070
Hardback: 9781848138087
eBook ePub: 9781848138100
eBook PDF: 9781848138094
eBook Kindle: 9781780322414

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