The impact of international organization on Nigeria’s foreign relations;UN group as case study


Price: 2000 Naira (BSC, MSC)




  1. Background to the study

Men and nations want the benefits of international organization, but they also want to retain the privileges of sovereignty, which are inseparable from international disorganization. The development of international organization has been plagued by the failure of human beings to think logically and realistically about the inexorable relationships between the purchase and the price, between the having and the eating of the cake (InisClude Jr.1956)

The formation of international organisations has a long history. Generally, it can be traced from the Greek civilization (Plato, Aristotle) although they have developed and prospered since the Enlightenment era. Notwithstanding, empirical studies show that the scientific study of international organisations does not commence until the 19th century. The modern form of international organisations started with the treaty of Utrecht, the Netherlands in 1713 and Vienna, Austria in 1815 with the outlining of the peace treaty principles. There is not much historical literature available on international organisations were formed and how their expansion occurred beyond state boards prior to 1900. Historically, the study of international organisations examine the formal organisations and their roles to address the particular issue of areas of international cooperation from the political perspective. According to Archer, the term “international organisation” was first used by Professor James Lorimer of England in 1867. The Archer does not provide details regarding how and which context Lorimer used the term. In regards to this, Pittman Potter has done extensive research about the origin of the term, confirming that Lorimer used the term first in his lecture before the Royal Academy on Edinburgh on May 18,1867on the heading of “On the application of the principle of relative or proportional, equity to international organisations”.According to Potter, Lorimer again used the term in his publication in 1971. Willing Balch used the term in 1874(Medani P Bhandari,2018).

Nigeria is one of such nations in the international community that international organisations have impacted in one way or the other. This impact includes politically, diplomatically and economically just mention a few . According to Tamar “International organisations (IOs) are essential and controversial actors in world politics today. They work on just about imaginable issue that states cannot easily address individually (Tamar L. Gutner Jan.2016).

Historically, the Federal Republic of Nigeria was one of seventeen African nations that attained Independence in 1960(Aluko,1981p.1). Nigeria being a former British colony and is currently a member of the United Nations. Nigeria is the most populous black nation (Uhomoibhi,2008 p.223).

Since the time of Independence in 1960, the country’s strategic location, size, resources and the manpower at its disposal have been focused towards achieving her stated Afrocentric foreign policy objectives, including peacekeeping operations in and outside sub-Saharan Africa under the auspices of the OAU(now African Union) Nigeria has pledged to support and has actively involved in series of these uporganisations’ initiatives particularly since the transition to democratic rule in 1999 (Uhomoibhi ,2008, p.223)

During the early 1960s, the country was acknowledged to have played a relatively hesitant and minimal role in foreign relations because of it was new and inexperienced in the art of international relations. Since the early 1970s, however, Nigeria has assumed a more active and vigorous role in world affairs.(Aluko, 1981, p.1), largely because of increasing wealth from oil revenues and perhaps, its success after the civil war  and it’s enormous oil wealth in this formative era of its foreign policy earned the country a golden opportunity to proclaim Africa as the centerpiece of its foreign policy (Ibrahim,1989)

With the end of the cold war in the early 1990s, which also followed the end of colonialism in Southern Africa, peacekeeping and conflict resolution became the major instruments of Nigeria’s African foreign policy thrust. In 1990s, Nigeria became a leading sub-regional African nation (Izah, 2011,p.349).

The Nigerian domestic political realities in the military perriods sent a negative signals to the international community, which led to its suspension from and heavy sanctions by the Commonwealth, the European Union, and the United Nations until the return to civilian rule in 1999. Bola Akinterinwa’s argument has out rightly stated Nigeria before 1999, “as a non-conformists and a threat to efforts at globalisation, democratisation and maintenance of world peace and security”(Akinterinwa, 2004 p.360).

  1. StatementoftheProblem

International organisations have been vital and also controversial actors in the international community over the years. Belonging to international organisations has benefits with conditions attached. It I’d through these benefits and conditions states are laid hold on. As a result of this states are propelled to act in some certain ways toward another.

In view of this, the researcher has decided to investigate these benefits and conditions to know the impact it has on the foreign relations of Nigeria. The problem confronting this research is to appraise United Nations Peacekeeping in Africa; its effectiveness and problem. The research intends to investigate the nature, operations of UN Peacekeeping and economic impact of the organization. There has been challenge on Nigeria foreign relation which goes beyond peace and war, past poverty and business; rather it explores the key players in world politics, intrinsic political patterns, and identifies the theories for how resolution and cooperation can be reached.


This study seeks to:

1.Examine impact of international organisations on Nigeria’s foreign relations.

2.Determine the contribution of the United Nations Group on Nigeria’s foreign relations.

3.Ascertain the economic impact of UN Group.


1.How do international organisations affect or influence foreign policy?

2.What is the impact of the UN Group on Nigeria’s foreign relations?

3.Is the impact of the United Nations positive or negative on Nigeria’s foreign relations?


Ho1: International organisations have no positive impact on Nigeria’s foreign relations.

Hi1: International organisations have positive impact on Nigeria’s foreign relations.

Ho2: The UN Group has not impacted positively on Nigeria’s foreign relations.

Hi2: The UN Group has impacted positively on Nigeria’s foreign relations.

1.6 Significance of the study

This study is a relevant source of knowledge for students and policy makers dealing with Nigeria and the world entirely.

The outcome of the study would be of primary benefits to Nigeria in the area of foreign relations with the rest of the world.

Also, Nigeria’s Foreign Affairs, UN, policy makers of Nigeria and the UN states will find this work useful.

This study will add to existing literature and also trigger further research on the subject.


This study focuses on elucidating the effect of the UN on Nigeria’s foreign relations

Scope means range or extent of ability. So scope of study means up to which extent present study is able to answer. This study will cover the United Nations as an international organisation.

Limitations of the study: Research is a process to conclude on some truth but, “truth has no ending”. Looking to the wideness of area of research, for a researcher it becomes difficult to cover all probable areas concerned with research. In looking to the objectives of research, researcher sets some boundaries to achieve objectives of objectives of the study. Such boundaries are limitations of study. During research, sometimes unfavorable conditions take place as a result some activities could be restricted by the researcher. Every work had some limitations and it’s not a matter of shame. These are the limitations of the study:

  1. AVAILABILITY OF RESEARCH MATERIAL: The research material to the researcher is insufficient, thereby limiting the study.
  2. TIME: The time frame allocated to the study does not enhance wider coverage as the researcher has to combine academic activities and the examination with the study.
  3. FINANCE: The finance available for the research work does not allow for wider coverage as resources are very limited as the researcher has other academic bills to cover.

1.8 Research method

Research method plays a very important role to proceed and carry out with the whole of all research study. Moreover, it is very important to choose the suitable method for your study. In general, a lot of studies that had been done before use the research method to achieve many purposes such as gathering data and information, development and evaluation (Refsdal,2008 &Schmuller, 2002).

This study will employ the use of a qualitative research approach where secondary sources of information form the basis of the study. Quantitative research approach will also be used where applicable.

1.9  Definition of terms

Official definition of impact, according to the United Nations “Impact implies changes in people’s lives. This might include changes in knowledge, skill, behavior, health or living conditions for children, adults, families or communities. Such changes are positive or negative long term effects on identifiable population groups produced by a development intervention, directly or indirectly, intended or unintended. These effects can be economic, socio-cultural, institutional, environmental, technological or of other types.

Positive impacts should have some relationship to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), internationally agreed development goals, national development goals to(as well as human rights as enshrined in the  constitutions), and national commitments to international conventions and treaties”(UNDG,2011)

United Nations (UN) :  United Nations is an international inter-governmental organisation (IGO), it serves as a framework for cooperative problem solving amongst states. Its core concern with promoting peace and security. It comprises 193 states (Heywood, 2011: 432).

International organisations: International organisations (IOs) are organisations that promote voluntary cooperation and coordination between or among its members. They are also known as inter-governmental organisations.

International organisations are diverse and sophisticated entities, with legal, political, and social dimensions that overlap and conflict in interesting way ( Ian Hurd ,2014).

Foreign relations: This is the relationships between political entities such as sovereign states, intergovernmental organisations, International non-governmental organisations and non-governmental organisations and  multinational corporations and the wider world systems produced by this interaction (Carlsnaes, Walter; et al. ed 2012).

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