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DG'S MESSAGE   Past Events

 

11TH BRAINSTORMING SESSION ON: THE 1861 ANNEXATION OF LAGOS AS A BRITISH CROWN COLONY : MATTERS ARISING

MONDAY, AUGUST 6, 2012

 

 

6th August 2012 will make it exactly 151 years since Lagos was annexed and then declared a colony under British rule.  This act of historical infamy was done after a British naval force entered the Lagos Lagoon area and seized the town in the name of Queen Victoria.  This development saw the conclusion of a Treaty of Cession of Lagos between the reigning Oba Dosumu and the British government.  This, in turn, led to the colonization of Lagos and its later establishment as the Capital of the Protectorate of Nigeria.

 

R-L: Prof. Emeritus Tekena N. Tamuno, Amb. Dapo Fafowora and HRH Erelu A. Dosunmu at the Conference in Lagos


 

Although this incident took place well over a century ago, it has numerous implications and lessons for contemporary times.  These implications range from the development of the role of the Oba of Lagos, as well as other traditional institutions, to the short and long-term implications of treaties, especially if they are coercively imposed. In contemporary times Nigeria and numerous other African countries face issues and problems that are not entirely dissimilar to those that occurred deep in our historical past and that led to incidents such as the coercive take over of Lagos. An example in this regard is the fact that the African continent is currently the focus of an international “scramble” that is not too different from the one that happened in the 1880’s. Not only are foreign powers in competition to acquire large portions of the continent’s resource wealth, they are also in the process of massive “land grab” in which some African countries actually concede huge expanse of land to foreign actors for various purposes for as long, in some instances, as ninety years. This has been appropriately describes as a process of recolonization.

 

A cross-section of  participants at the NIIA 11th Brainstorming Session


 

It is in order to examine these, and other lessons that can be derived from this incident in our historical past, especially as they apply to our present circumstances, that the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs organized a One-Day Brainstorming Session on the 1861 Annexation of Lagos as a British Crown Colony: Matters Arising. A cross section of diplomatic specialists, including Foreign Ministers, envoys, defence attachés, and academics that have had experiences in government, participated in the brainstorming session.


 

10TH BRAINSTORMING SESSION ON:

 

 LINKAGES BETWEEN AND AMONG RELIGION, POLITICS AND INTERNATIONAL SECURITY: WILL THERE BE AN END TO BOKO HARAMISM IN NIGERIA?

 

AND

 

EVOLVING PRINCIPLES FOR NATIONAL AND INTERNATIONAL SECURITY

 

June 29, 2012

 

 

R-L: Professor Bolaji Akinyemi and Ambassador Olu Adeniji, former Ministers of External Affairs and Professor Ayo Ajomo


Events in the past few weeks in some states in Northern Nigeria have continued to draw National and International attention to the dire security challenges confronting the Nigerian state. Suicide bombings and other forms of armed attack by elements of Boko Haram are on the rise. In fact, it is beginning to take a discernable pattern where Christian places of worship are attacked on Sundays. However, the suicide bombings took a dangerous dimension last Sunday, June 17, 2012 by way of reprisal attacks, following the bombing of three Churches in Zaria and Kaduna. This development has sparked off speculations as to whether the situation would degenerate into sectarian violence where adherents of the two major religions in Nigeria would pitch battle against one another.

Despite all these, certain questions are very vital for further examination. Against the background of the Boko Haram attacks on especially Christian places of worship, are there any linkages among religions, politics and International Security? Since Boko Haram is alleged to be affiliated to Al Qaeda in the Maghreb, what principles can be adduced for maintenance of International Security?

It is in light of these questions that the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs organized its 10th brainstorming session. A cross section of diplomatic specialists, including Foreign Ministers, envoys, defence attachés, and academics that have had experiences in government, participated in the brainstorming session.

 

L-R: Ambassador Olugbenga Ashiru, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Professor Alaba Ogunsanwo


 

A cross-section of  participants at the NIIA 10th Brainstorming Session


 

 

9TH BRAINSTORMING SESSION: NIGERIA’S CONTRIBUTIONS TO INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT, PEACE AND SECURITY, FROM 1960 TO 2012

 

 (Tuesday, 15th and Wednesday, 16th May, 2012)

 

L-R: Chief Tom Ikimi and Prof. Bolaji Akinyemi, CFR, former Ministers of External Affairs, at the NIIA Conference Chamber in Lagos


The Nigerian Institute of International Affairs (NIIA) organized its 9th Brainstorming Session on Nigeria’s Contributions to International Development, Peace and Security, from 1960 to 2012, on Tuesday, 15th and Wednesday, 16th May, 2012, with a view to documenting them for posterity. In this regard, a cross section of diplomatic specialists, including Foreign Ministers, envoys, defence attachés, and academics that have had experiences in government, participated in the first phase of the research enquiry and gave their reminiscences. Click here for programme of event.

L-R: Mr. Alex Ekeanyawu, Deputy Director (Directorate), Professor Bola A. Akinterinwa, Director-General (NIIA), and other participants at the 9th Brainstorming Session in Lagos

 

 

8th Brainstorming Session on Regional Integration in West Africa and Globalization: Challenges, Opportunities and Way Forward

 

 (Thursday, 19th and Friday 20th April, 2012)

 

L-R: Prof. Bolaji Akinyemi, CFR, Gen. Yakubu Gowon, GCFR and Prof. Peter Okebukola at the NIIA Conference Chamber in Lagos


Regional integration is an expression of globalization in another form, especially that both of them directly seek to promote international borders that unite, rather than divide. Regional integration seeks promotion of harmonization of policies at political, economic, social and cultural levels. It de-emphasizes international borders to the advantage of collective sovereignty.  However, regional integration efforts predate the emergence of current globalization, which, essentially, is ICT driven. Globalisation seeks opening up of markets and, particularly, the incorporation of markets of developing countries into the global economy.

 

More significantly, African leaders decided as far back as 1991 to bring about functional unity in Africa through regional approach. It was in this context that the 1991 Treaty Establishing The African Economic Community (AEC) divided Africa into five regions in its Article 1(d) and (e). The ultimate objective is to achieve continental unity through regional unity.  Since 1991, different efforts have been made to promote regional integration in the West African region. However, the efforts are still faced with several challenges. It is not yet clear the extent to which multilateral sovereignty can definitely replace national sovereignty. The quantum of sovereignty required to enhance regional integration in a considerable manner is still not known. In fact, the manner globalization is impacting on national life and regional cooperation is such that the future of regional cooperation and integration is increasingly becoming a new subject of research. Explained differently, in which way is globalization impacting on regional integration, and vice-versa, within the framework of the ECOWAS? Can we talk about progress in or future of integration efforts at the level of ECOWAS, especially in light of the disaffiliation of Mauritania which decided to quit the ECOWAS in order to join the Maghreb Union in the Northern African region?

 

A cross section of the audience at the 8th Brainstorming Session


There is no disputing the fact that Nigeria has been a chief promoter of regional integration. In fact, with the successful dismantlement of the obnoxious policy of apartheid in South Africa in 1994, regional integration has become another major focus of Nigeria’s foreign policy. What has been the outcome of Nigeria’s efforts? When will there be an ECOWAS currency? When will the ECOWAS Monetary Union cease to be a dream? Will there be ECOWAS citizens beyond paper definitions? How does regional integration affect globalisation in West Africa? What are the dynamics of regional integration in the ECOWAS region? What is the place of external actors, civil society organizations, ECOWAS Free Movement Protocol, organized and informal sectors of the economies of ECOWAS countries, regional insecurity and peace keeping efforts, good governance, problems of natural resource control and ECOWAS Diasporans? To what extent are regional integration efforts addressing climate change?

 

It is in an attempt to seek explanations to these questions that the  Nigerian Institute of International Affairs organized its 8th Brainstorming Session to reflect on this important subject matter. Click here for Programme of Event.

 


 

SECOND INDIA-AFRICA ACADEMIC CONFERENCE
14th and 15th March, 2012


 

Nigeria and India are undoubtedly important countries, both within their regional contexts, as well as globally.  Whereas India is industrially more advanced, and therefore, in a better position to enrich economic relations and cooperation between the two countries, Nigeria is strategically positioned to add value to it through trade and other forms of cooperation with India.  It is important to observe that strong relations with India could be strategic to Nigeria, and West Africa’s goal of developing competitive domestic, as well as, regional economies in the foreseeable future.
At the bilateral level, relations between Nigeria and India have truly come of age in terms of history and scope.  While diplomatic relations dates back to 1958, current economic links cover oil and gas, petro-chemical and fertilizer production, agriculture, as well as small and medium scale enterprises.  A large and growing population of Indians lives in Nigeria and vice versa.  However, regardless of the existence of good relations between the two countries, there is still room for the expansion of ties, not only between Nigeria and India, but also between India and the West African region.  At present, the bulk of Indian relations with states in West Africa are concentrated mainly in Nigeria and Ghana. In an increasingly globalized world, characterized by economic competitiveness, there is room for the expansion of ties between India and other West African States, and for such states to take advantage of India’s economic dynamism. It is for this reason that the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs, in collaboration with the Indian Council on World Affairs, organized the second India-Africa Academic Conference in Lagos, on 14th and 15th March, 2012.

 

 

Public Lecture on New Rapprochement Between Nigeria and France


The Nigerian Institute of International Affairs organized a public lecture on New Rapprochement Between Nigeria and France on February 23, 2012 in Lagos. The lecture was delivered by Professor Bamitale Omole, Vice Chancellor, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife. The event was chaired by Chief Molade Okoya Thomas, CON.

In attendance were Professor Bolaji Akinyemi, former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Chief Arthur Mbanefo, former Nigeria's Permanent  Representative to the UN, Representative of H.E. Jacques Champagne de Labriolle, the French Ambassador.  Others include serving and retired Ambassadors, media chieftains and her representatives, the academics from both public and private universities, and research staff of the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs.

 

 

Training Programme on International Relations for Students of Tertiary Institutions


The Nigerian Institute of International Affairs organized a training programme on International Relations for students of tertiary institutions on February 23, 2012 in Lagos. In attendance were students of Lagos State University and Redeemers University.

For further information, click to download the audio recording of presentations

 

 

The Nigerian Institute of International Affairs was established in 1961, with the aim of providing a nursery of ideas on what direction Nigeria should take on international affairs. Since inception, the Institute has been organising Conferences, Roundtables and Lectures. These are aimed at addressing current foreign policy issues and anticipating others still on the horizon.

The Institute is a specialised instrument of foreign policy formulation in Nigeria. It serves as an intellectual base upon which decision-makers rely for informed opinion and expert advice in order to make rational choices between contending policy options.

 

SECOND INDIA-AFRICA ACADEMIC CONFERENCE
14th and 15th March, 2012


 

Nigeria and India are undoubtedly important countries, both within their regional contexts, as well as globally.  Whereas India is industrially more advanced, and therefore, in a better position to enrich economic relations and cooperation between the two countries, Nigeria is strategically positioned to add value to it through trade and other forms of cooperation with India.  It is important to observe that strong relations with India could be strategic to Nigeria, and West Africa’s goal of developing competitive domestic, as well as, regional economies in the foreseeable future.
At the bilateral level, relations between Nigeria and India have truly come of age in terms of history and scope.  While diplomatic relations dates back to 1958, current economic links cover oil and gas, petro-chemical and fertilizer production, agriculture, as well as small and medium scale enterprises.  A large and growing population of Indians lives in Nigeria and vice versa.  However, regardless of the existence of good relations between the two countries, there is still room for the expansion of ties, not only between Nigeria and India, but also between India and the West African region.  At present, the bulk of Indian relations with states in West Africa are concentrated mainly in Nigeria and Ghana. In an increasingly globalized world, characterized by economic competitiveness, there is room for the expansion of ties between India and other West African States, and for such states to take advantage of India’s economic dynamism. It is for this reason that the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs, in collaboration with the Indian Council on World Affairs, organized the second India-Africa Academic Conference in Lagos, on 14th and 15th March, 2012.

 

 

Public Lecture on New Rapprochement Between Nigeria and France


The Nigerian Institute of International Affairs organized a public lecture on New Rapprochement Between Nigeria and France on February 23, 2012 in Lagos. The lecture was delivered by Professor Bamitale Omole, Vice Chancellor, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife. The event was chaired by Chief Molade Okoya Thomas, CON.

In attendance were Professor Bolaji Akinyemi, former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Chief Arthur Mbanefo, former Nigeria's Permanent  Representative to the UN, Representative of H.E. Jacques Champagne de Labriolle, the French Ambassador.  Others include serving and retired Ambassadors, media chieftains and her representatives, the academics from both public and private universities, and research staff of the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs.

 

 

Training Programme on International Relations for Students of Tertiary Institutions


The Nigerian Institute of International Affairs organized a training programme on International Relations for students of tertiary institutions on February 23, 2012 in Lagos. In attendance were students of Lagos State University and Redeemers University.

For further information, click to download the audio recording of presentations

 


Seventh Brainstorming Session on Nigeria's Foreign Policy and Global Challenges in 2012


The global environment is increasingly becoming terroristic.  The political climate is changing fast beyond the Arab spring saga.  The reform of the UN is yet to be meaningfully addressed.  The impact of climate change is also becoming more difficult to cope with.  Regional integration in Africa is still far from making much progress.  In fact, the future  directions of the ECOWAS and the AU in the constantly changing world need a focused articulation.  It was in this connection, that the Institute organised its Seventh Brainstorming Session on Nigeria's Foreign Policy and Global Challenges in 2012 on Wednesday, 16th November, 2011 in Lagos

In attendance were serving and past Ministers of Foreign Affairs, serving and retired Ambassadors, media chieftains and her representatives, the academics from both public and private universities, and research staff of the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs.


 


DIPLOMATIC BRIEFING: HIGHLIGHTS OF BILATERAL TIES BETWEEN NIGERIA AND FRANCE.


The Nigerian Institute of International Affairs (NIIA) organised another in its series of diplomatic briefing on Tuesday, July 26, 2011.  The breifing highlighted the bilateral ties between Nigeria and France .  His Excellency, Mr. Jean-Michel Dumond, Ambassador of France to Nigeria   briefed the Institute's management and research staff on the foreign policy reforms with the focus on Africa in general and Nigeria in particular.

 


2ND BRAINSTORMING SESSIONS ON NIGERIAN MEDIA AND PROTECTION OF NATIONAL INTEREST.


The Nigerian Institute of International Affairs (NIIA) organised its 2nd  Brainstorming Session on Nigerian Media and Protection of National Interest on Thursday, 9th June 2011. The aim of the Session is to underscore the need to generate ideas on national security and nation building. The Brainstorming Session is focused basically on how to protect Nigeria’s security interest from the perspective of the media.

In attendance were top ranking military officers, media chieftains and her representatives, the academics from both public and private universities, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Federal Ministry of Information and Communication, members of the Governing Council and research staff of the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs and media houses. 


The Nigerian Institute of International Affairs (NIIA), on Tuesday, 4th January 2011,  held Special Brainstorming Sessions on the 16th Ordinary Session of the AU Summit, Cote D'Ivoire's  Crisis and Sudanese Referenda. The sessions were chaired by Professor Bolaji Akinyemi and Professor Gabriel Olusanya.

 

 

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