The Foundation of Modern Nigeria: Reflections on the IBB Legacy

The Foundation of Modern Nigeria: Reflections on the IBB Legacy

Nigeria’s first and only military president, General Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida turns 77 on 17th August 2018. That would be a clear quarter of a century after leaving Office.  Both his age and the length of time since he left office would be enough to begin to contemplate his abiding legacy in Nigeria’s quest for development and modernization.

Though six administrations have ruled Nigeria in those 25 years, public discourse still reflects a certain abiding interest and fascination with the regime of economic, political and social reforms which Babangida courageously initiated and pursued during his tenure.

As a befitting mark of his 77th birthday, a major book project under the above heading is being undertaken to garner intellectual viewpoints on the legacy and abiding historical significance of the IBB presidency in the quest for modern Nigeria. This compendium of writings is not undertaken with the object of writing another new glossy book that chronicles the achievements and failures of the presidency of General Ibrahim Babangida, much less a book of revisionist import.

Our wish is to incorporate writings by scholars and professionals from diverse intellectual and political backgrounds to provide fresh insights into the incumbency of one of Nigeria’s most remarkable presidencies, even before the content of its presidential documents and archival materials are made public. Contributors are being invited on their individual merit as scholars and persons of ideas. We are giving importance to perspectives emerging from both Nigerian and non-Nigerian scholars, who are either westerners but with great interest in Africa or who are of African origin but are located in different parts of the world.

The book would be made up of three parts, including oral interviews mainly of himself, senior cabinet members and key officials of his presidency. The oral interviews, which is a new pattern of presidential scholarship in Nigeria is expected to provide raw materials and insights for future analysis and interpretation of the Babangida presidency.

Contributors are being invited on their individual merit as scholars and persons of ideas to contribute a chapter to this volume, which we are planning to place in the BlueBridge’s African Presidential Politics Series ( Initial contacts with the publishers have indicated a strong interest, and we are now at the stage of putting together a list of authors and abstracts to finalise an agreement with the publishers.  Broad thematic guidelines are provided below as guideposts to help contributors derive titles for their chapters. Though shorter or longer contributions are welcome, we recommend chapters of 2000-3000 words.



SECTION A: The Historical and Political Setting

  • IBB in the Context of military leadership
  • Rooting for an Open Market
  • Reforming Government

SECTION B: Economic Policy Measures

  • Economic Reform as Policy
  • Deregulation
  • Establishment of Regulatory Institutions
  • Banking reform and expansion
  • Telecommunications
  • Infrastructure
  • Urban and Rural Development
  • Employment Generation

SECTION C: Creating the Political Environment

  • Open Political Debate
  • Constitutional Conference
  • Two Party Architecture
  • Innovative Electoral Systems
  • Systematic Transition Programme

The book will receive international visibility through the various international e-Book collections on political science, leadership and governance which is accessible and fully searchable via various International Publishing Platforms. The print book which will be available through well-known bookseller websites, such as Amazon, Barnes and Nobel, Blackwell, etc, will also be submitted for inclusion in Scopus and other International Books Citation Index.

Prospective authors are encouraged to write a chapter specifically for the book. However, it is also possible to draw on already published work, adapting this to address any of the themes/sub themes of the book. Copyright clearance for work that has already been published is entirely the responsibility of the contributing authors, and evidence of such clearance may be required by the publishers when we submit the final draft of the volume.

Abstracts should feature the working title of the proposed chapter, the author or authors responsible for it, together with the details of the corresponding author.  The editors will choose the most promising abstracts from those submitted: the criteria that will be used here are: relevance to the goals set out for the volume, originality of scope, theoretical sophistication, and empirical grounding of the material.

An abstract of approximately 300 words should be submitted to the editors by email (, and/or preferably by 31st July, 2018. Initial Terms of Reference for Chapter ContributorsITRC (Agreed Undertaking) will then be forwarded to all authors whose abstract has been selected for the publication.

Baba Yunus Muhammad

General Editor