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The YBAU is first and foremost an academic project that will provide in-depth evaluation and analysis of the institution, its processes, and its engagements. Despite the increased agency in recent years of the African Union in general, and the AU Commission in particular, little is known – outside expert policy or niche academic circles – about the Union’s activities. This is the gap the YBAU wants to systematically address. It seeks to be a reference point for in-depth research, evidence-based policy-making and decision-making.
Volume Editor: Ulf Engel
This is the first edition of the Yearbook on the African Union (YBAU). The YBAU is first and foremost an academic project that will provide in-depth evaluation and analysis of the institution, its processes, and its engagements. Despite the increased agency in recent years of the African Union in general, and the AU Commission in particular, little is known – outside expert policy or niche academic circles – about the Union’s activities. This is the gap the YBAU wants to systematically address. It seeks to be a reference point for in-depth research, evidence-based policy-making and decision-making.

Contributors are: Adekeye Adebajo, Habibu Yaya Bappah, Bruce Byiers, Annie Barbara Chikwanha, Dawit Yohannes Wondemagegnehu, Katharina P.W. Döring, Jens Herpolsheimer, Jacob Lisakafu, Frank Mattheis, Henning Melber, Alphonse Muleefu, Edefe Ojomo, Awino Okech, Jamie Pring, Elizabeth Sidiropoulos, Tim Zajontz.
This edited volume offers new insights into the inner life of the African Peace and Security Architecture (APSA) and introduces scholars of African security dynamics to innovative epistemological, conceptual and methodological approaches. Based on intellectual openness and an interest in transdisciplinary perspectives, the volume challenges existing orthodoxies, poses new questions and opens a discussion on actual research practice. Drawing on Global Studies and critical International Studies perspectives, the authors follow inductive approaches and let the empirical data enrich their theoretical frameworks and conceptual tools. In this endeavor they focus on actors, practices and narratives involved in African Peace and Security and move beyond the often Western-centric premises of research carried out within rigid disciplinary boundaries.

Contributors are Michael Aeby, Yvonne Akpasom, Katharina P.W. Döring, Ulf Engel, Fana Gebresenbet Erda, Linnéa Gelot, Amandine Gnanguênon, Toni Haastrup, Jens Herpolsheimer, Alin Hilowle, Jamie Pring, Lilian Seffer, Thomas Kwasi Tieku, Antonia Witt, Dawit Yohannes Wondemagegnehu
Volume I: Politics, Poverty, Marginalization and Education
With Africa as its point of reference and departure, this volume examines why and how the two concepts – radicalisms and conservatisms – should not be taken as mere binaries around which to organize knowledge. It demonstrates that these concepts have multiple and diverse meanings as perceived and understood from different disciplinary vantage points, hence, the deliberate pluralization of the terms. The essays show what happens when one juxtaposes the two concepts and how they are easily intertwined when different peoples’ lived experiences of poverty, political and social alienation, education, intolerance, youth activism, social (in)justice, violence, etc. across the length and breadth of Africa are brought to bear on our understandings of these two particularisms.

Contributors are: Adekunle Victor Owoyomi, Adeshina Francis Akindutire, Adewale O. Owoseni, Bright Nkrumah, Clement Chipenda, Ebenezer Babajide Ishola, Edwin Etieyibo, Israel Oberedjemurho Ugoma, Jonah Uyieh, Jonathan O. Chimakonam, Madina Tlostanova, Maduka Enyimba, Muchaparara Musemwa, Odirin Omiegbe, Obvious Katsaura, Olufunke Olufunsho Adegoke, Peter Kwaja, Philip Akporduado Edema, Tafadzwa Chevo, and Temitope Owolabi.

Abstract

Formal education is perceived as a veritable tool and instrument for the acquisition of appropriate skills, abilities, knowledge and competence both physical and mental knowledge, for the youth to earn a living and contribute to the development of his or her society. Given how much this view is prized in Nigeria, there has been a surge in places like Delate State in pupils and students admission into primary, secondary and tertiary schools at a very early age of 3-4 years primary school, 8-9 years secondary school and 14 years tertiary school. Meanwhile, limited studies are available investigating the abuse and impact of early schooling on children development. This chapter examines the academic abuse and violence against the students in Delta State, Nigeria. It particularly reviewed the academic achievement records of 700 secondary school students from 10 public secondary schools, who were under aged at the point of their entrance into the school (Between 8 and 9 years). They were compared with the academic records of 300 students who were in their late childhood at the point of entrance into the secondary school between 12-13 years. The study made use of Ex-post facto research design. One research question was raised and was answered using mean and standard deviation, while one hypothesis was tested at 0.05 alpha level using the statistical t-test. The findings show significant difference in academic achievement of the correlated students in favor of the late entrants. In conclusion, the chapter traces and links the effect of the academic abuse of the students to the immaturity of their prefrontal cortex of the brain, meant for learning. Based on this, it recommends the following: That (1) children below 6 years of age should not be made to start primary school; (2) children below 11 years of age should not be made to start secondary school; (3) parents be made aware of the growth and development of their children to avoid putting pressure on their children to start school early: and (4) proprietors and authorities of private schools be strictly monitored to avoid abusing the youth academically.

In: Africa’s Radicalisms and Conservatisms

Abstract

Decolonial critique of modernity/coloniality emerged at the end of the Cold war when the happy image of globalization was launched as the only option left for the humanity. Decolonial thought instead came up with the idea of decoloniality as an alternative possible world with a specific epistemology, ethics and politics. This decolonial model has gradually become attractive worldwide against the failure of the positive phase of neoliberal globalization epitomized in the Covid-19 crisis. The binaries of conservatism and radicalism as well as right and left, democracy and authoritarianism, nationalism and cosmopolitanism are outdated products of the previous model of knowledge unable to describe the present social and political reality in which conservatism easily becomes radical and calling for change, whereas yesterday’s radicals turn into supporters of status-quo who are nostalgic of the past. The present shift from neoliberal globalism to right-wing nationalism and populism essentially leaves the global coloniality intact and multiplies the number of the new dispensable defutured lives - human and other. It also adds additional angles of discrimination and dehumanization such as technological coloniality. Possible venues for decolonial re-existence are linked with relationality, refusal to compete for a better place in modernity or a tag of a victim, and working for “deep coalitions”, thus attempting to give the world back its future dimension.

In: Africa’s Radicalisms and Conservatisms

Abstract

Nigeria currently has 20 million out-of-school children, 13.2 million children out of this are victims of Boko Haram’s activities in north east Nigeria, making it the highest in the world. The dislocation of families and destruction of basic infrastructure have rendered several children of school age to be out of school. This study, therefore, aims at unravelling the magnitude of out-of-school children in the north east of Nigeria. The study also seeks to assess the coping strategies of parents of out of school children to meet their children’s educational needs. It will also assess measures taken by the government (if any) to address the problem. The study employed the system theory and relying on secondary data sources, findings show that terrorism in Nigeria is opposed to western education, most especially girls' education, schools have become one of the targets of attack and kidnapping of school girls, leading to temporary closure of schools and displacement of children and adults in the affected area. It is expected that findings of the study will unravel the magnitude of the problem as well as proffer solutions for meeting the educational needs of the victims of terrorism in North East Nigeria.

In: Africa’s Radicalisms and Conservatisms

Abstract

Human interest is fundamentally underscored by ambivalence that conditions the pursuit and attainment of common good. It could be stated that African development is trapped in the contested network of interests that are defined autochthonous and those derived from foreign accretions, consequent upon post-colonial indices of self-definition, recognition, socio-political, and economic determination among others that condition the harness of human interest. In South Africa and Nigeria, there are past and recent telling evidences to this effect. In this connection, this discourse adopts critical and analytical methods by embracing Innocent Asouzu’s (an African philosopher) outlook of complementarity approach to reflect on the notions of human interest and common good in contemporary Africa. Basically, it argues for a rapprochement of sustainable complementary interests to establish that human interest(s) are missing links in reality, which when unified in the service of a transcendental goodwill, need not alienate African identity, common good, and development. Furthermore, the discourse clarifies that even though complementarity of interest is desirable to address missing links in reality, it must be reasonably moderated to discern the extent of host nations’ (South Africa and Nigeria) responsibility and obligations toward migrants/immigrants. In other words, the discourse also suggests that ‘unequaled’ rights and privileges of the host nations (citizens/indigenes) over foreigners would determine the realization or otherwise of complementarity of interest in situation of political contestation over limited resources and livelihood opportunities.

In: Africa’s Radicalisms and Conservatisms
In: Africa’s Radicalisms and Conservatisms
Author: Jonah Uyieh

Abstract

Across the world, youths have been and are agents of change in different societies. In Nigeria, likewise other African countries, many of the youths have kept a positive mindset and have fitted well into whatever roles they found themselves. However, majority of the youths have also used the opportunity created by the widening gap of unemployment and other avenues of socio-economic and political ineffectiveness to fit into new forms of ‘dirty-relevance’ in their immediate and general environments. These new forms of relevance have manifested in individual’s and group’s activities of hooliganism, violence, militancy, and other social vices of youths during elections and in post-election political periods. The developments have also attracted so much attention from the local and international media. To a reasonable degree, in Delta State, south-south Nigeria, youths’ negative cultures have transformed into militancy; while in Lagos State, south-west of the country, such have entrenched the reign of Area Boys. Both have been deployed as political tools since Nigeria’s return to democracy in 1999 to date. Hence, with the specific examples of these two states, this paper examines the background, trend, nature and impact of youths’ extremism in Nigeria. This is a qualitative study that employs unstructured interview methods to generate primary data from selected persons in both states during the field work. It analyses the new forms of youth roles from the perspectives of the actors, ordinary citizens and politicians; and how they have served as mixed bags in the contemporary development of these states and the country at large. In addition, it provides recommendations on how to find a lasting solution to this menace of youths’ dirty-relevance.

In: Africa’s Radicalisms and Conservatisms