Fidelis C. Nnaji
Department of Political Science, Ebonyi State University, Abakaliki, Nigeria
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org; 07033432263
The recurrent issues of flawed party primaries and controversial party candidature in Nigeria’s contemporary political milieu are antithetical to democratization. This paper sets out to examine the critical interplay between party primaries, intra-party conflict and quest for credible elections in Nigeria’s fourth republic. Using the Group Conflict Theory which postulates that conflict among individuals is borne out of irreconcilable selfish interests, the paper argues that the endemic controversial party primaries, parallel congresses, wave of party cross-carpeting, super-imposition of candidates and post-election litigation are traceable to non-adherence to institutional rules that guide the conduct of party primaries in Nigeria. Essentially, data for the study are sourced through documentary method in conjunction with content technique of analysis. Findings of the study reveal that the prevalence of intra-party conflict and dubious primaries are inimical to Nigeria’s quest for sustainable democracy. Thus, despite the existence of formal rules, political parties flout the guidelines with impunity and jeopardize the democratic system. The study therefore recommends for the adoption of punitive measures that are backed by the law against individuals who circumvent INEC statutory rules, electoral acts and party constitutions.
Adekeye, M. A. (2017). Party Primaries, Candidate Selection and Intra-Party Conflict in
Perspective.Covenant University Journal of Politics and International Affairs. 5, 22-38.
Aleyomi, M. B. (2013). Intra-Party Conflict in Nigeria. The Case Study of People’s Democratic Party (PDP).Journal of Sustainable Development in Africa.15 (4), 281-296.
Ande, E. &Obensa, I. (2019). Mixed Fortunes for Adamawa, Kogi PDP After Elections. The Guardian, 25 September.
Egboh, E.A. &Aniche, E.T. (2015).The State, Political Parties and Crisis of Internal Democracy politics. 4(1), 24-30.
Epstein, I.D. (1967). Political Parties in Western Democracies. New York: Praeger.
Ezeigbo,O.(2018).APC Battles Primary Election Crisis. Available at www.thisdaylive.com/index.php/2018/10/15-battles-primaries.
Kura, S.B. (2014). Clientele Democracy: Political Party Funding and Candidate Selection in Nigeria. African Journal of Political Science and International Relations. 8(5), 124-137.
Mamah, E. &Nkwopara, J. (2018). APC Chieftains mull mass defection to PDP in Imo. Vanguard online.
Niworu,S.M. (2019). Party Internal Democracy and Democratic Consolidation in Nigeria: A Reflection on the All Progressives Congress 2018 Primary Elections. Journal of Commonwealth and Comparative Politics, 17(1), 1523-1552.
Nwachukwu, J.O. (2019). 2019 Election: INEC discloses number of political parties to contest. Daily Post, 2nd January.
Ojo, J. (2018). Party Primaries of tears and blood and sorrow. The Punch, Tuesday, October 10.
Olokor, F. (2018). 2018 Primaries among the Worst in Nigeria- INEC Chairman, The Punch, December 1.
Omodia, S.M. (2011). Political Parties and the Challenge of Free and Fair Elections in Nigeria: A focus on Kogi State 2011 Gubernatorial Elections. European Scientific Journal 8(3), 1857-1431.
Sartori,G. (1976). Parties and Party System: A framework for Analysis. London: Cambridge.
Udeuhele, G.I. (2015). Parties Parallel Primaries and Its Implications to Political Development in Nigeria.Journal of Developing Country Studies, 5(10), 109-121.
Yanai, N. (1999). Why Do Political Parties Survive? Journal of Party Politics, 5(1), 5-17.
Full paper here