Understanding the Politics of Zoning System in Nigeria: A Purview of Rawls’ Complex Egalitarianism
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The question of justice in the history of political philosophy becomes necessary as a result of men’s struggle or quest to get shares of the limited resources. In such a struggle, the weak ones are elbowed out and the strong ones get hold of the resources. In view of this, the advent of John Rawls’ “A Theory of Justice” (1971) provides a procedural method of distributing political rights, economic benefits, opportunities, as well as other social goods – like health, shelter and education. The Nigerian Quota System doctrine reflects Rawls’ theory of ‘justice as fairness’, which is intended to provide modalities for the march to nationhood and enthronement of a stable democratic socio-political order as against the parochial sentiments and mutual suspicion built by ethno-political zones against each other through the nation’s political sojourn. Using the critical and expository methods, the paper seeks to demonstrate that, as a result of the undue application of zoning principle and the lack of regard for merit or competency in the application of federal character principle, standard and professionalism are compromised and endangered, particularly in the public offices and educational sector. Hence, the paper suggests ways to be adopted by Nigeria which ethnic politics and sentiments would be dethroned, in order to ensure a stable democracy and socio-political order.