Climate-related Human Mobility, Institutional Regimes and Patronage Politics in the Resettlement Process in Nigeria

Activity: Academic Talks or PresentationsConference Presentation


This paper explores the nexus of institutional regimes and patronage politics that underpin the resettlement process of forcibly displaced groups occasioned by climate change induced stiff competition for livelihood spaces especially between herders and farmers in Nigeria. Anchored on the theory of New Institutionalism, it argues that the resettlement process of displaced groups is enmeshed in the culture of “strong men” that connects with delicate institutional dynamics and political patronage to appropriate the policy/political space and use same to demonstrate an economy of affection towards familiar networks. Recently there is a politics to alter critical institutions that relate to agrarian livelihoods like the National Water Resources Bill 2020 which seeks to harmonise the Water laws/cede the governance of all water resources and its banks in the jurisdiction of subnational governments in Nigeria to the Federal Government. Similarly, the President expressed interest in using moribund gazettes to (re-)establish cattle routes across Nigeria. These politics is viewed on the surface as identity politics about institutions in the resettlement process in favour of displaced groups with affinity to key state actors in the country without fully reckoning with their climate change underpinnings. In the interaction between the institutions and climate change conflict, their mutual reinforcement is dialectical. We interrogate this interface of climate-related displacements and politics of use of existing institutions and maneouvres to create new ones with qualitative document analysis of materials that bear on the politics of institutions related to climate-change conflicts and resettlement process of displaced persons in Nigeria.
Period30 Jun 2023
Held atDSA2023: Crisis in the Anthropocene: rethinking connection and agency for development
Degree of RecognitionInternational