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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The limits of charismatic authority and the challenges of leadership in Nigeria
Author:Osaghae, Eghosa E.ISNI
Year:2010
Periodical:Journal of Contemporary African Studies (ISSN 0258-9001)
Volume:28
Issue:4
Pages:407-422
Language:English
Geographic term:Nigeria
Subjects:authoritarianism
political elite
political science
Link:https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.1080/02589001.2010.512738
Abstract:Charismatic legitimation theory emerged in the 1960s as a framework for analysing the rise of personal leadership in developing countries. The theory fitted in quite well with the roles that postindependence leaders who had built large followership in the struggles for independence were expected to play in nationbuilding and economic development. The failure to meet these expectations and, in particular, the development of charismatic legitimation into personality cults and unaccountable authoritarian rule has however led to critical reviews of the theory. This article examines the theory in the light of the Nigerian experience and argues that, given the character of the country's elite, effective and accountable leadership cannot be left to the preferences and choices of leaders no matter how exemplary, messianic, heroic, or revolutionary they may be. The article makes a case for installing the requisite institutional correlates that are consonant with democracy, rule of law and accountability and capable of restraining the tendencies towards the personalization of political power. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]
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