RESOLUTION OF THE NIGER DELTA CRISIS AND THE ENFORCEMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL RIGHTS IN NIGERIA, 1999-2014.

RESOLUTION OF THE NIGER DELTA CRISIS AND THE ENFORCEMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL RIGHTS IN NIGERIA, 1999-2014.

ABSTRACT

The study examined the extent the resolution of the Niger Delta crisis deepened the effective enforcement of environmental rights, between 1999 and 2014. The specific questions for investigation were: Did the establishment of the Niger Delta Ministry reduce the level of environmental degradation in the Niger Delta? Did the adoption of the Amnesty Programme fail to assuage environmental protests in the Niger Delta? Did the reliance on MNCs relegate the enforcement of environmental health in the Niger Delta? The Marxian political economy paradigm was used to ascertain relations of the oil complex at the local level involving the state, the MNCs and the reactionary groups operating the Niger Delta. The study focused on how the resolution of the Niger Delta crisis (X) variable determined the enforcement of environmental rights in Nigeria (Y) variable. It was confirmed that the enforcement of environmental rights affected the resolution of the Niger Delta crisis as follows: The establishment of the Niger Delta Ministry reduced the level of environmental degradation in the Niger Delta; The adoption of the Amnesty Programme failed to assuage environmental protests in the Niger Delta; The reliance on MNCs relegated the enforcement of environmental health in the Niger Delta. The Ex-Post Facto design was used as the research design. Data from secondary sources such as journals, books, official documents where qualitatively analyzed. The continued existence of environmental degradation protests and relegation of environmental health, were seen to affect the achievements of the Niger delta Ministry in the effective control of environmental degradation. The incidences of conflicts, oil bunkering, militarization of the area, gas-flaring, oil theft, pipeline vandalism, poor and unsafe water and ill health point to environmental crisis as the problem of Niger Delta and the need for the enforcement of environmental rights.