Public relations and peace negotiation in the Niger Delta

Igben, HGO 2016, Public relations and peace negotiation in the Niger Delta , PhD thesis, University of Salford.

Download (2MB) | Preview


Crude oil was discovered in 1956, in Bayelsa State in Nigeria. Expectations were high that this find would deliver socio-economic advancement of the entire Niger Delta region in which it is located. Instead, serious hostilities have arisen based on reactions to an unequal distribution of oil wealth, socio-economic depravation faced by large numbers of the population and gross environmental degradation. In the emerging crisis, government and the oil companies were pitched against communities who are resident in the oil producing areas. Government and the oil companies maintain that they have equitably utilized oil wealth to the benefit of all stakeholders. Those from the oil producing communities claim denial of their rights to land ownership, a pollution free environment, infrastructural development, and any oil related socio-economic dividends. This study explores the Niger Delta conflict through a focus on public relations (PR). It provides new insights into the nature of PR practices of government and oil companies in the region and their consequences for efforts to secure effective conflict resolution. The research draws its explanatory insights from a range of theoretical work in the disciplines of PR, communication, and sociology, built primarily around Excellence Theory which illuminates and advocates the two-way symmetrical model of interaction. Methodologically, the research utilizes stratified random and cluster sampling in conducting a survey of 400 respondents. The project also undertakes focus group research with 30 participants from three selected Niger Delta states. This thesis argues that that the PR of the government and oil companies have been underpinned by outmoded models of PR practice that do not represent the collective interest of the strategic stakeholders in Niger Delta oil wealth. These practices do not support effective peace-building and conflict processes. The explanatory model of this thesis points to a necessary adjustment in government and oil company PR practices in line with a two-way symmetrical theory which takes account of the interests of all Niger Delta oil resource stakeholders on an equitable basis. Igben Harvey G.O. June 2016

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Schools: Schools > School of Arts & Media > Arts, Media and Communication Research Centre
Funders: Education Trust Fund
Depositing User: HGO Igben
Date Deposited: 31 May 2017 12:10
Last Modified: 27 Aug 2021 23:31

Actions (login required)

Edit record (repository staff only) Edit record (repository staff only)