International Journal of
Sociology and Anthropology

  • Abbreviation: Int. J. Sociol. Anthropol.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2006-988X
  • DOI: 10.5897/IJSA
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 305

Full Length Research Paper

African indigenous religious rituals and magic in Ibadan politics: Issues for the democratisation process in Nigeria

Jegede, Charles Obafemi
  • Jegede, Charles Obafemi
  • Institute of African Studies, University of Ibadan, Nigeria.
  • Google Scholar

  •  Accepted: 20 November 2013
  •  Published: 28 February 2014


The wind of democracy is blowing everywhere in Africa and particularly Nigeria. One remarkable aspect of this is that there exists a blend of indigenous religious rituals, magic and politics. These rituals in the ancient Yoruba kingdoms were used for checks and balances, deposing a bad ruler and protection of the citizenry. This is an important aspect of Nigerian demo¬cratization process that requires urgent attention. Ibadan as the largest city in West Africa and apart from Lagos the most populous city in the Southwest of Nigeria; and so in the trajectory of Nigerian democracy Ibadan is fundamental to the Nigerian political architecture. As in most other places in Nigeria, Ibadan politics, rituals and magic as practiced in African traditional religion have become veritable instruments in the hand of politicians as they play and practise politics. The researcher participated in political campaigns, observed meetings and the rituals of oath-taking and the way politicians came to priests and priestesses of Yoruba deities. The study reveals that in Ibadan politics, there is the mixture of in¬digenous religious rituals and magic in the political landscape in Nigeria.  
Key words:  Magic, rituals, religion, democracy, politics.