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The Eastern Nigerian Regional Crisis of 1953

The Eastern Nigerian regional crisis of 1953 started on January 30, 1953, and ended on May 6, 1953. The National Council of Nigerian and Cameroon (NCNC) majority turned itself into opposition and as such killed the bills that were brought to it including the appropriation bill.

The governor had to use his reserve powers to decree appropriation for the running of the government. The crisis arose because of the internal split and power struggle within NCNC.

Causes of the Eastern Nigerian Regional Crisis

In the first place, the party members from Lagos failed to elect their party leader Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe into the House of Representatives in Lagos.

In the second place, the party leaders did not agree on whether or not they should continue to support the MacPherson Constitution. The party members who were holding ministerial positions supported it while others did not.

Later, the party central ministers were expelled. But some regional ministers did not support the expulsion and there were moves to reshuffle the posts of the regional ministers with a view to replacing the six expelled ministers at the center.

Minor Effects

This brought about ‘the Eastern Nigerian regional crisis of 1953′ when the six withdrew their original letters of resignation to make the reshuffling possible. When it became impossible to carry on the business of the house, the House was dissolved on May 6, 1953.

The Eastern Nigerian Regional Crisis of 1953

The Question of British Southern Cameroons’ Autonomy

The Aftereffect of Eastern Nigerian Regional Crisis

The connection of Southern Cameroons to the Nigerian Federation by Britain after the First World War worked to the disadvantage of Southern Cameroons’ sovereignty and political ambitions.

With her international status as a Trust Territory, Southern Cameroons was marginalized by the colonial administration which failed to recognize her as a separate territory within the Nigerian Federation.

Under such dispensation, Southern Cameroonians felt that for such a Nigerian connection to be of any benefit to the territory, it should be granted autonomous regional status in line with the existing regions in Nigeria.

This strain of relations caused Cameroonians to animate Nigeria’s political scene with a series of events that became very instrumental in influencing the direction and nature of the evolution of the Nigerian federation.

This feud for regional autonomy which dominated Nigerian politics was undertaken by pressures groups, political parties, and at individual levels through vocal voices, petitions, conferences and walkouts which expressed their grievances.

The paper argues that the granting of quasi and full regional status in 1954 and 1959 respectively to Southern Cameroons was a consequence of their demonstrations. On this score, Nigeria rose from three to four regions under colonial rule.

From this paradigm, we conclude that the history of the evolution of the Nigerian federation can never be complete without the Southern Cameroons factor. Archival data and analyses of the existing literature have provided evidence for this conclusion.

The aftereffect of the Eastern Nigerian regional crisis:

On February 23, 1953, the National Independent Party (NIP) was formed in the Eastern Region by the expelled regional and central ministers and their supporters outside. In the new government that was elected in 1953, the NCNC formed the government and the NIP the opposition.

Secondly, the efforts of Cameroon’s representatives in the Eastern Region for Cameroon’s autonomy from the East were intensified.

Finally, the third effect of the crisis is the general loss of confidence in democratic institutions, not only in the East but also in the whole country. People generally became disillusioned about these institutions.

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Mixed Economic System

What is a Mixed Economic System?

A mixed economic system is a system that combines aspects of both capitalism and socialism. A mixed economic system protects private property and allows a level of economic freedom in the use of capital, but also allows for governments to interfere in economic activities in order to achieve social aims.

According to neoclassical theory, mixed economies are less efficient than pure free markets, but proponents of government interventions argue that the base conditions required for efficiency in free markets, such as equal information and rational market participants, cannot be achieved in practical application.

KEY TAKEAWAYS

  • A mixed economy is an economy organized with some free market elements and some socialistic elements, which lies on a continuum somewhere between pure capitalism and pure socialism.
  • Mixed economies typically maintain private ownership and control of most of the means of production, but often under government regulation.
  • Mixed economies socialize select industries that are deemed essential or that produce public goods.
  • All known historical and modern economies are examples of mixed economies, though some economists have critiqued the economic effects of various forms of mixed economy.

Understanding Mixed Economic Systems

Most modern economies feature a synthesis of two or more economic systems, with economies falling at some point along a continuum. The public sector works alongside the private sector, but may compete for the same limited resources. Mixed economic systems do not block the private sector from profit-seeking, but do regulate business and may nationalize industries that provide a public good.

For example, the United States is a mixed economy, as it leaves ownership of the means of production in mostly private hands but incorporates elements such as subsidies for agriculture, regulation on manufacturing, and partial or full public ownership of some industries like letter delivery and national defense. In fact, all known historical and modern economies fall somewhere on the continuum of mixed economies. Both pure socialism and pure free markets represent theoretical constructs only.

What Is the Difference Between a Mixed Economy and Free Markets?

Mixed economic systems are not laissez-faire systems, because the government is involved in planning the use of some resources and can exert control over businesses in the private sector. Governments may seek to redistribute wealth by taxing the private sector, and using funds from taxes to promote social objectives.

Trade protection, subsidies, targeted tax credits, fiscal stimulus, and public-private partnerships are common examples of government intervention in mixed economies. These unavoidably generate economic distortions, but are instruments to achieve specific goals that may succeed despite their distortionary effect.

Countries often interfere in markets to promote target industries by creating agglomerations and reducing barriers to entry in an attempt to achieve comparative advantage. This was common among East Asian countries in the 20th century development strategy known as Export Led Growth, and the region has turned into a global manufacturing center for a variety of industries.

Some nations have come to specialize in textiles, while others are known for machinery, and others are hubs for electronic components. These sectors rose to prominence after governments protected young companies as they achieved competitive scale and promoted adjacent services such as shipping.

Difference From Socialism

Socialism entails common or centralized ownership of the means of production. Proponents of socialism believe that central planning can achieve greater good for a larger number of people.

They do not trust that free market outcomes will achieve the efficiency and optimization posited by classical economists, so socialists advocate nationalization of all industry and the expropriation of privately owned capital goods, lands, and natural resources.

Mixed economies rarely go to this extreme, instead identifying only select instances in which intervention could achieve outcomes unlikely to be achieved in free markets.

Such measures can include price controls, income redistribution, and intense regulation of production and trade.

Virtually universally this also includes the socialization of specific industries, known as public goods, that are considered essential and that economists believe the free market might not supply adequately, such as public utilities, military and police forces, and environmental protection. 

Unlike pure socialism, however, mixed economies usually otherwise maintain private ownership and control of the means of production.

History and Criticism of the Mixed Economy

The term mixed economy gained prominence in the United Kingdom after World War II, even though many of the policies associated with it at the time were first proposed in the 1930s. Many of the supporters were associated with the British Labour Party.

Critics argued that there could be no middle ground between economic planning and a market economy, and many — even today — question its validity when they believe it to be a combination of socialism and capitalism. Those who believe the two concepts don’t belong together say either market logic or economic planning must be prevalent in an economy.

Classical and Marxist theorists say that either the law of value or the accumulation of capital is what drives the economy, or that non-monetary forms of valuation (i.e. transactions without cash) are what ultimately propel the economy. These theorists believe that Western economies are still primarily based on capitalism because of the continued cycle of accumulation of capital.

Austrian economists starting with Ludwig von Mises have argued that a mixed economy is not sustainable because the unintended consequences of government intervention into the economy, such as the shortages that routinely result from price controls, will consistently lead to further calls for ever increasing intervention to offset their effects. This suggests that the mixed economy is inherently unstable and will always tend toward a more socialistic state over time.

Beginning in the mid 20th century, economists of the Public Choice school have described how the interaction of government policy makers, economic interest groups, and markets can guide policy in a mixed economy away from the public interest.

Economic policy in the mixed economy unavoidably diverts the flow of economic activity, trade, and income away from some individuals, firms, industries, and regions and toward others. Not only can this create harmful distortions in the economy by itself, but it always creates winners and losers.

This sets up powerful incentives for interested parties to take some resources away from productive activities to use instead for the purpose of lobbying or otherwise seeking to influence economic policy in their own favor. This non-productive activity is known as rent-seeking.

Capitalism Definition

Capitalism is an economic system whereby monetary goods are owned by individuals or companies. The purest form of capitalism is free market or laissez-faire capitalism. Here, private individuals are unrestrained in determining where to invest, what to produce, and at which prices to exchange goods and services. more

Command Economy Definition

A command economy is a system where the government determines production, investment, prices and incomes. more

Business Activities Are Unfettered in a Free Enterprise System

Free enterprise is an economic system where few restrictions are placed on business activities and ownership in terms of trade and government intervention. more

Centrally Planned Economy

A centrally planned economy is an economic system in which decisions are made by a central authority rather than by market participants. more

What Is Socialism?

Socialism is an economic and political system based on public or collective ownership of the means of production, which emphasizes equality rather than achievement. more

Social Justice Definition

Social justice is a concept holding that all people should have equal access to wealth, health, well-being, privileges, and opportunity. more

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