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Farrukh R Khan

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Geopolitics of Cameroon and Nigeria boarder Crises: Energy impact of the In
by Farrukh R Khan   

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The boundary between Cameroon and Nigeria that had extended from Lake Chad to the sea and into the deep ocean had been a source of disagreement between the two neighboring states. Although close historical links had existed between the two nations, Germany acting as the colonial power in what is now Cameroon and Britain in the present day Nigeria had agreed about the division as far back as the 1913. However, France at the end of the First World War replaced Germany as a colonial power and Britain administered a part of the Cameroons. Thus, after the independence of Nigeria Bakassi peninsula, claimed by Cameroon, ended up under Nigerian administration. This thesis presents an examination of the International Court of Justice decision in the Nigeria vs. Cameroon case and attempts to determine how this decision influenced the balance of hydrocarbon reserves and the energy situation in the region.

The boundary between Cameroon and Nigeria that had extended from Lake Chad to the sea and into the deep ocean had been a source of disagreement between the two neighboring states. Although close historical links had existed between the two nations, Germany acting as the colonial power in what is now Cameroon and Britain in the present day Nigeria had agreed about the division as far back as the 1913. However, France at the end of the First World War replaced Germany as a colonial power and Britain administered a part of the Cameroons. Thus, after the independence of Nigeria Bakassi peninsula, claimed by Cameroon, ended up under Nigerian administration. This thesis presents an examination of the International Court of Justice decision in the Nigeria vs. Cameroon case and attempts to determine how this decision influenced the balance of hydrocarbon reserves and the energy situation in the region. 

Excerpt
The dispute between Nigeria and Cameroon over the political boundaries between the two countries was the result of shifting colonial occupation of territory after the two World Wars (Omoigui, “Origins of the Dispute”). When the British had first arrived in West Africa, the present day states of Nigeria and Cameroon did not exist and the traditional rulers governed their shifting domains, which did not have firm political boundaries (Falola, Chapter 3). Prior to the establishment of the European colonial powers, the political situation in what us now the Southern part of Nigeria was as depicted in the figure presented below (Falola, pp. 52). On September 10, 1884, the Obong of Calabar in the now Southern Nigeria had signed a Treaty of Protection with the British that converted his kingdom into a British protectorate and the British were to gradually expand their colonial rule to the rest of the territory that is now Nigeria. However, the region was also of interest to the Germans who had been expanding their colonial rule in the neighboring region of what is now Cameroon.


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