Lugard created provincial courts manned entirely by British political officers. He stripped appeal cases from the native courts to the British courts and stopped lawyers from practicing in courts. Of course, thjis dint go well with the people and thus a revolt. 1920s and 1930s were well known for revolts almost everywhere in the Southern Nigeria. In the East, chief amongst the revolts was the Aba women riot of 1929 targetted against the imposing of direct taxes.
The Alaafin of Oyo and other kings of same status as at then had a similar kind of status to the Northern Kings (emirs). As well with limited powers and authority, the Yoruba Oba had no claim to being the sole controller of the native authority with no direct tax collection too. It was foreseen that this method will crash in a decentralized setting like Yoruba. But the British authority defied the warnings to impose it. The british set up was working against the traditional democratic system the people were used to before colonialisation. The new system excluded the educated elites from having says in the government. It was sure the system wont work. The imposition dint come without consequences though.
The system of indirect rule developed by Lugard and his successors in the Fulani Emirates was equally applied throughout the rest of the Nigeria area of Nigeria. While it was largely successful in the Caliphate, it fell short in the non-muslim states. The caliphate had a smooth tradition of centralization of authority and a regular tax collection strategy as against the other neighbouring states whose kings had limited powers and taxation controls. Tivland, for example, had no paramount chief in control; it made use of councils of elders for administration until 1937.
May be or not Lugard knew about this complexity. It was claimed that he personally discouraged the real union of the North and the South by emphasizing more on the differences than the similarities in divisions. This had continuously encouraged the plague as we still witness in the Nigeria politicking of today. In the bid to minimize spending and less use of foreign manpower, Lugard first employed the use of the Indirect rule for the governing of both North and South. The system met stumbling blocs at various levels. Became successful in some parts and a total failure in some other parts. The Establishment of Indirect Rule. Learn more...
On this season of the chronicles [see previous series here], we shall learn (in three extra series) more about the events that led to our independence from the time of the amalgamation in 1914. How did the Yoruba react to the indirect rule system? How true was the fact that the Igbos were never ruled with the indirect rule system? Some said the system never failed in the North.
THE NORTHERN EXPEDITION: How the North fell. Regularly, the British expeditions often starts from a water based area. The North wasn't an exception. Lokoja (in the present day Kogi) was the start point in 1867. As usual, a consulate was established. The British interest in the trade of along the Niger, the United African Company … Continue reading INDEPENDENCE DAY SPECIALS: THE CHRONICLE OF BRITISH EXPEDITIONS IN NIGERIA. (III)
THE NIGER-DELTA/BIAFRA EXPEDITION: How the rest of the South was conquered. Although Lagos was the first place the British conquered, it appeared that there was also a concomitant push going on in the South South of what is today called 'Nigeria' as at the same time when Lagos was been bombarded. The interference also came … Continue reading INDEPENDENCE DAY SPECIALS: THE CHRONICLE OF BRITISH EXPEDITIONS IN NIGERIA (II).
In 1862, shortly after the abolition of slave trade off the Atlantic coast of Lagos and after gaining full dominance, in the order that they wade off potential hijackers (French and Portuguese Government), the British administration employed the use of force and guns on the Lagoon. This move eventually compelled the then King of Lagos: … Continue reading INDEPENDENCE DAY SPECIALS: THE CHRONICLES OF THE BRITISH EXPEDITIONS IN NIGERIA [I].