In the 19th century, the British used indirect rule in Nigeria to prevent resistance from the local people and to save on the cost of running a government. In indirect rule, the British chose local leaders who were loyal to them to rule and collect taxes on their behalf. Resistant leaders were quickly replaced.
Indirect rule was administered well among the Fulani people who were able to use both British law and traditional Islamic law. In Yorubaland, this rule made chiefs have more power at the expense of others. In some parts of Nigeria, the leaders who were appointed by the British government had no respect among their people.