This article evaluates state responses to environmental insecurity in the Niger Delta. It analyzes the performance of the OMPADEC and the NDDC as the most outstanding institutional responses to a deepening crisis and contradictions of the delta by the federal government of Nigeria. Its central finding is that, though these responses have moderated the crisis, they remain inadequate and ineffective, epitomized by increasing environmental degradation, excruciating poverty, rising tension and ethnic militias, and general underdevelopment. The inadequacy of these responses may not be unconnected with political influences, corruption, unrepresentativeness, and other underlying structural problems that render them cosmetic. A developmental Nigerian state that is autonomous and productive, rather than rent-seeking, coupled with good governance at all levels, is required to engage the problems of the delta adequately. All institutional responses should be closely linked with grassroots organizations, particularly community-development associations and related rural-empowerment nongovernmental organizations, with adequate frameworks for monitoring and evaluation.


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pp. 73-89
Launched on MUSE
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