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The Referendum in French Somaliland Aftermath and Prospects in the Somali Dispute by: I.M. lewis

The Referendum in French Somaliland Aftermath and Prospects in the Somali Dispute by: I.M. lewis

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The Referendum in French Somaliland Aftermath and Prospects in the Somali Dispute by: I.M. lewis
The Referendum in French Somaliland Aftermath and Prospects in the Somali Dispute by: I.M. lewis

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The Referendum in French Somaliland: Aftermath and Prospects in the Somali DisputeAuthor(s): I. M. LewisReviewed work(s):Source:
The World Today,
Vol. 23, No. 7 (Jul., 1967), pp. 308-314Published by:
Stable URL:
Accessed: 25/01/2013 15:08
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This content downloaded on Fri, 25 Jan 2013 15:08:44 PMAll use subject toJSTOR Terms and Conditions
 
THEWORLD TODAYJuly967
endedntheformal nnouncementfEasternNigeria'secession,tsclearhat ivilwarmayesult.ll heignsince 1March,whent-Col.OjukwussuedhisRevenueCollectiondict,orderinghatdutiesndtaxesayableoFederalollectorsn theEastmust epaidfromAprildirectlyotheEasternNigerianreasurynEnugu,ndicatedhateces-sionwasonlymatterf ime.nthemaze fegalefinitionsnhisEdict,Ojukwuwas carefulo avoidaffectingirect ilpayments,hich repayableotheFederal uthoritiesnLagos.No one n hissenseswouldbeanxious odisruptheoyaltiesndoperationsf anindustryhoseexpenditurensideNigerian1966lone mountedoover£40m.,mostoftntheEasttself,nd whichaidanother20m. ndirectoyaltiestotheFederalGovernmentn thatyear,fwhichheEastreceived e-tween 0and66perent.On 21June,owever,jukwuignedfurtherdecreempoweringim otake ver lloilroyaltiesntheEasternRe-gion,herebyeighteninghedangerf civilwar.Itisbyno means certain hat theNorthern-dominatedederalGovernmentndtheNorthernegionalovernmentillhavehe olidsupportf heWestndMid-WestRegionsn amilitarytrugglegainsttheEast. Thesuspicionsstronghat heemergencyrovisionsfthe17March decreewere nsertedythe FederalMilitaryovernment,backedytsNorthernegionallly, gainstheoppositionfboth heWest ndtheMid-West.Equally,tooks s ifLt-Col.Gowon's actionon27Mayndeclaringstate femergencyhroughoutigeriand nabolishingheSMC wastakenithergainstheppositionfheWest-ernnd Mid-WestMilitaryovernorsrwithoutonsultinghem. othhadstatedubliclyhatheywouldnotupportnyFederalGovern-mentction o use forcegainstheEast.Accordingly,owon's ctionwasunconstitutionalnderheprovisionsfthe17Marchdecree, ut,ofcourse,hatountsorittlenthepresentituationnNigeria.
TheReferendumnFrenchSomaliland
AftermathndprospectsntheSomalidispute1.m.ewis
Thereferendumn19MarchnFrenchomaliland,rance'sastmain-landAfricanossession,asgainroughtorld ttentionobearntheproblem osedbythecontinuedismembermentftheSomalination,
DrLewissReadern theDepartmentfAnthropologytUniversityollegeLondon.308
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FRENCHSOMALILAND
an ssuewhichasnowbecomeerhapshemostntractablefllnter-territorialisputesnAfrica.undamentallyhisroblemtemsromhefacts fSomalierritorialispersion,herbitraryelineationffrontiersinhe olonialeriodnNorthastAfrica,nd hediametricallypposedbasesof statehoodfthe SomaliRepublicon theonehand,and ofEthiopiandKenyanthether.espitehe ormer'sniquehistoryndcenturies-oldmharaore-nationalism,thiopiandKenyaannthecontext ftheirisputewith omaliaberegardedsprototypesfthenewAfricantate.Like most f heirounterpartslsewherentheon-tinent,achs apatchworkf differentribes ndanguage-groupsndseeks o achieve ationalntegrationndunity hroughirmlyentralizedcontrolnd apassionatettachmento itsfrontiers.nsharpontrast,theSomaliRepublics aStatebaseddirectlypontheapplicationftheprinciplef self-determinationoasingleeople,heSomali,nlythree-quartersfwhom renfact ontainedithinhis thnictate. orthoseuarterf million o-nationalsmmediatelycrosshefrontiernNorthernenya,nd thefurther illion r soineasternthiopia,heexistencef heSomaliRepublics aconstantnspirationothe ssertionofndependentomalinationalismndan nvitationomergewith tnfullyealized tatehood.But,ofcourse,o the rulersfEthiopiandKenyaand to modernnationalistpiniongenerallyntheseStates,theirnomadicSomalipopulationsepresentnlyneofmanyiverse lements hichmusteweldedirmlyogetherftabilitynd realnationhoodre obe achieved.Fromheirointfview,hepecialircumstancesfheSomalind oftheirartiallyealizedtatehoodonotntitleomaliminoritiesutsidetheRepublicoany pecialispensationordothey rovide precedentfor urthernification.o concede hiswouldbe to nvitend encour-agetherthniceparatistovementshichwouldndangeruchfragileunitys hasbeenttained.hus,neffect,heighto elf-determinationexistsnlynacolonialontext.ence,f nFrenchomalilandfricanopinionenerallyeemsmore avourableo theSomali nationalistam-paignhere,his sonlyecause heerritorysstill Frencholony.ndeveno,theresultsf the recent eferenduma 60percentmajorityagainstndependencendnfavourf continued rench ule haveofar ot edomuchfnoutcry,xcept,fourse,nheomaliRepublic.In theightfrecentventsnthisinyRed SeaFrenchnclave,withitsopulationfome125,000lmostvenlyividedetween omalindkindredfarribesmen,hemosturprisingeature fthisesultsnotitsendorsementfFrench olonialtatus,ut ratherhathiswasnotaffirmedoreoverwhelmingly.rior o1963,heSomalis,whoreon-centratedntheurbanportfJibutinduntileryecentlyeremorepoliticallyctivendnationalistnheirspirationshan heirfareigh-boursothenorth,eld themajorityf seatsntheocalterritorial309
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