Nigeria: The Way the West Was Won

Every time Nigerians go to the polls, the basic issue is the same: can the Moslem Northern region, with more than half the nation's official population of 55.6 million, dominate the rest of the land? The invariable answer: sort of. One way or another, ever since Nigeria gained its independence five years ago, the North has managed to hold on to the prime ministry, keep itself a sizable majority in the federal parliament and maintain its tenuous, if often disputed, control of other regions.

One of the most strategic holds was in Nigeria's Western region, where Chief Samuel Akintola's pro-North...

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