Original Research

Religious fanaticism and thugocracy: Catalysts to the brain drain in Nigeria

Ezichi A. Ituma, Kalu O. Ogbu, Prince E. Peters
HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies | Vol 78, No 1 | a7884 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hts.v78i1.7884 | © 2022 Ezichi A. Ituma, Kalu O. Ogbu, Prince E. Peters | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 28 June 2022 | Published: 18 November 2022

About the author(s)

Ezichi A. Ituma, Department of Religion and Cultural Studies, Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria; and, Department of Religion Studies, Faculty of Theology and Religion, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa
Kalu O. Ogbu, Department of Religion and Cultural Studies, Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria; and, Department of Religion Studies, Faculty of Theology and Religion, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa
Prince E. Peters, Department of Religion and Cultural Studies, Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria; and, Department of Religion Studies, Faculty of Theology and Religion, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa


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Abstract

Nigeria is a multi-ethnic and multicultural society, and therefore, Nigeria’s religious inclinations differ broadly. There are currently three religions dominant in Nigeria, namely Christianity, Islam and African Traditional Religion (ATR). These three religions, especially the first two, have demonstrated varying levels of fanaticism in the past leading to many recounted crises and jungle justice incidents in Nigeria. Because of Nigerian politics, we have witnessed the use of armed thugs by politicians to harass and even kill party opponents and displace their families. These two factors have caused many young, highly skilled persons to flee Nigeria for a safer haven. This study therefore tries to review current religious fanaticism and electioneering thuggery leading to loss of lives and property, which consequently sees to the fall of the Nigerian economy and the subsequent enthronement of insecurity in the country. It suggests that these factors are foundational problems consequent to the amalgamation of 1914 and are leading causes for the rapid rate of migration of Nigerian experts out of the country.

Contribution: At a time when Nigeria is in dire need of great brains to help in its developmental struggle, politicians and religious bigots have constituted a serious blockade to this ambition. This article is a review of recent political and religious turmoil in Nigeria with a view to call the attention of all warring religious and political stakeholders to the damage their extremism has already caused and to also bring the attention of Nigerians to the foundation of these problems, namely the amalgamation and the need to address it.


Keywords

religious fanaticism; thuggery; brain drain; amalgamation; Nigeria

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