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Border Region Development as Impetus for Transborder Cooperation and Integration in Africa: The Nigerian Experience

B. M. Barkindo


The aim of this article is to call attention to the need for a radical change in implementation strategies if the integrated Africa being envisaged (in the treaty) by the year 2034 is to emerge. The fact that this message is not new, that it has been the subject of numerous publications, debates and conferences, underscores its relevance since the desired objective is still not achieved. The recent attempt by African member-states at integration is, therefore, another opportunity for renewing the call for a radical change in attitudes and implementation tactics by the ruling elite.

The article is presented in three sections. The first part outlines the role of borders and borderlands as seen from state-centric perspectives. The second section discusses integration and transborder cooperation attempts within the context of nationalistic perspectives. Nigerian experiences within the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the Lake Chad Basin Authority (LCBA) are given as specific examples. The third section takes on the central theme of the paper, the imperative for Border Region Development as an impetus for transborder cooperation and integration. The discussions are, although not exclusively, based on the Nigerian experience.

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Print ISSN: 0886-5655
Online ISSN: 2159-1229