BEYOND LA FRANCOPHONIE
NIGERIA AND THE QUEST FOR HEGEMONY IN WEST AFRICA
Of the many factors that have undercut Nigeria’s quest for hegemony in the West African sub-region since the 1960s, one which has been over-celebrated by scholars of Nigerian foreign policy, and even touted as the core underwriter of the hegemonic struggles between the Nigeria and France in literature, is ‘la francophonie’. This article, drawing from documentary sources, adopts a fresh perspective and challenges this view and argues that, beyond la francophonie, Nigeria’s failure to project its hegemony in West Africa lay in its incapacity to build its hegemony from the domestic society. It concludes and recommends that if Nigeria must fulfil its hegemonic aspiration, in West Africa, in the 21st century, it must strengthen its engagement with the society.