In it’s latest update of failed states, the acclaimed free web-based encyclopedia project – Wikipedia has added Nigeria to it’s list of failed states which includes Syria, Somalia, Myanmar, Iraq, Yemen, Turkey, Democratic Republic of Congo, Central African Republic, Rwanda, Liberia, Yugoslavia, Lebanon, Afghanistan, Sudan, South Sudan.
Describing a failed state, Wikipedia says such a state is one where a political body has disintegrated to a point where basic conditions and responsibilities of a sovereign government no longer function properly.
It further added that a state can also fail if the government loses its legitimacy even if it is performing its functions properly.
“For a stable state, it is necessary for the government to enjoy both effectiveness and legitimacy. Likewise, when a nation weakens and its standard of living declines, it introduces the possibility of total governmental collapse”, it added.
On its part, the Fund for Peace; a Washington DC based non-profit, non-governmental research and educational institution which works to prevent violent conflict and promote peaceful coexistence in “failed states” characterizes a failed state as having the following characteristics:
– Loss of control of its territory, or of the monopoly on the legitimate use of physical force therein
– Erosion of legitimate authority to make collective decisions
– Inability to provide public services
– Inability to interact with other states as a full member of the international community
The NGO further stated that widespread corruption and criminality, the intervention of state and non-state actors, the appearance of refugees and the involuntary movement of populations, sharp economic decline, and foreign military intervention are likely to occur in such states.