THE ROLE OF RELIGION IN THE POLITICS
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THE ROLE OF RELIGION IN THE POLITICS
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Inspite of the religious was of the people of Delta
State, the question of the role of religion in the politics of Delta
State still stand as a major challenge to religious scholars. This essay
in its bid to unravel the role of religion in the society, outrightly
dwelt on the impart of religion in politics.
In this research,
different methods ranging from interviews with political stakeholders
and clergies, personal observations, journals, newspapers and other
related material to the topic were used. Though the work is limited to
Delta State, it findings could be applicable to the entire southern part
of Nigeria particularly the areas dominated by Christianity and African
While the first chapter of this essay
dealt with the method, scope and significance of the study, the second
chapter dealt the views of different authors. It also defined the
concept of politics and the different religious practices among the
different ethnic groups in Delta State.
Chapter three dwelt on
the role of religious leaders and traditional rulers in mobilizing the
youth in the political system while chapter four largely dwelt on the
relationship between the church and the state and also on the role of
the church in combating the moral laxity in the political system today.
It also talks extensively on the role of religion in the electoral
system in Delta State.
Finally, it was concluded that the role
of religion in politics is not limited to institutions like the churches
and government rather it cut across the individuals such as the
traditional rulers, the priests, the youth and the elders who forms the
religious congregation and the political actors who are at the center of
the political sphere.
values and moral integrity are social indicators that guarantees the
general acceptance of individual within the society. The control of the
government machinery is entrusted to a few individuals, however, the
fear of changeable and unreliable nature of man often introduce
religious beliefs into the political sphere.1 This is due to the view
that belief is a component of moral behavior and at such our beliefs
affects our conducts.2 This fact clearly explains why there is hardly
any political office holder today, that does not profess religion.
of the difference which exist between religion and politics which
presupposes that religion deals with the realm of conviction and
ultimate reality, a view in life sees good and calls it into reality
while politics is seen as a realm of compromise in which ultimate
purposes clash, interest competes and conflicting claims are adjusted by
a process of give and take;3 the ethical views and realities which
coexist side by side within our society weave religion deeply into
politics particularly in the search for moral integrity in the political
BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
Religion is an integral
part of every society. In recent times, religious activities have been
more deeply woven into the fabrics of partisan politics to the extent
that religious participation correlates with politics in Delta State.
That is, it is difficult to be successful in the political environment
without proper alignment with a religious organization within the
Throughout the history of Nigeria’s political and social
development, civil organizations have always looked up to religious
institutions for inspirational leadership. Hence, it is undoubted that
religion still have powerful influence in the structuring of the
political culture and some policies of the government in Nigeria.4 It is
against this background that this essay will be examining the role of
religion in the politics of Delta State. Consequently, this research
will mainly expose the religio-political affiliations in the daily
administration of Delta State, the role of religious institutions in the
electoral practices of Delta State as well as the influence of religion
on the policies of Delta State.
AIMS AND OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
research is primarily aimed at revealing the impact of religious
institutions in the politics and the civil administration of Delta
State. It also aims at considering the relevance of churches to the
government and as well examine the role of religious institutions in the
moral upliftment of the state even in the face of the moral decadence
prevalent in our political system. This research also aim at creating
awareness on the need to respect the religious diversity, reject the
prejudice against religious and political affiliation and accept the
necessity for peaceful coexistence and social cohabitation in Delta
Therefore, at the end of this research, we should have more knowledge in the following aspects:
The influence of religion in the policies and decision making in Delta State.
The role of religion in the electoral practices that is, in political campaigns and the daily administration of Delta State.
The position of religious institutions in the crusade against moral decay in Nigeria at large.
SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
significance of this study is to emphasize the importance of religion
in the life of political actors in Delta. The importance of religion in
the politics of Delta State whether it be domestic party politics or
inter-state relations, cannot be underestimated. It is generally
believed among the people that religion is the life energy and at such,
tradition can best be explained by the politics of representation.
religion plays a good role in the progress, development, peace and
co-existence in the affairs of every government. The government of Delta
State has for long initiated religious programmes which are believed to
contribute to the unity progress and the development of the state. The
government often emphasize the importance of religion in the daily
administration of the state. Hence the daily morning prayers of the
government house chapel, a long standing tradition in Delta State.5
the significance of this work is to establish the fact that religion
stands at the centre of governmental institutions not only in Delta
State, but in the entire country. It will also establish the fact that
religion wield a lot of influence in the policies and decisions of the
Thus, religion is greatly implicated in the shaping
and structuring of the socio-political-environment. It could be
understood in terms of power relations.
SCOPE OF THE STUDY
research was carried out in the vicinity of Delta State. However, due
to the constraints of time and finance, two local government areas of
Delta State including Ughelli North and Oshimili North shall be the
research areas for this work. This work will also cover extensively the
various religious practices in this political province. This research
will also be limited to the influence of religion in the political
practices and in the daily administration of this province.
research will involve different methods in obtaining detailed
information about the structure of religion and politics in Delta State.
Primarily, previous works done by scholars on the political and
religions affiliations of Delta State and some other areas of common
interest will serve as source of information for this research.
Therefore, the various libraries in these two chosen local government
areas will be primary source of information. The University of Benin
Library will also be used as a major base for the acquisition of
information. Newspaper publications on religions and politics as well as
the use of the internet search machines will also be employed to ensure
the success of this research. Also, interviews will be conducted among
the people particularly among the clergymen and politicians in Delta
State so as to acquire first hand information from stakeholders who are
vast in the area of religion and politics within Delta State.
LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
wide geographical area covered by this research extending to the whole
of Delta State seem to be one of the challenges to this work. Out of the
27 local government areas, only two could be effectively used due to
Secondly, the lack of cooperation,
particularly from the political class, who always claim to be very busy
also stand as a limitation to this research. However, from the
co-operation of a few within Delta State the research was a great
THE ROLE OF RELIGION IN THE POLITICS
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This research will involve different methods in obtaining detailed information about the structure of religion and politics in Delta State. Primarily, previous works done by scholars on the political and religions affiliations of Delta State and some other areas of common interest will serve as source of information for this research. Therefore, the various libraries in these two chosen local government areas will be primary source of information. The University of Benin Library will also be used as a major base for the acquisition of information. Newspaper publications on religions and politics as well as the use of the internet search machines will also be employed to ensure the success of this research. Also, interviews will be conducted among the people particularly among the clergymen and politicians in Delta State so as to acquire first hand information from stakeholders who are vast in the area of religion and politics within Delta State. .. philosophy project topics
THE ROLE OF RELIGION IN THE POLITICS