Nationalism in Africa was prompted by many factors, these factors had economic, political, social and cultural undertone.
1. The Economic Factors
1. The European exploitation of Africans by dictating the prices of raw materials produced in Africa which they buy at cheap prices while selling the imported goods at very exhorbitant prices.
2. The colonial government promoted the sale of exported goods and discouraged the locally manufactured ones which they regarded as illicit and substandard ones which they regarded as illicit and substandard.
3. Trading activities were monopolized by European companies such as John Holt, U.A.C., etc.
4. Indigenous entrepreneurship was deliberately discouraged as Africans were denied bank loans.
5. Africans in the civil service received very low wages when compared with their European counterparts.
2. The Political Factors Include:
1. The disenfranchisement of Africans, and lack of adequate representation in both the legislative and executive councils. They were not considered eligible for any positions and were never consulted before issues affecting them were decided.
2. The rights and liberties of Africans were dangerously curtailed so as to keep them perpetually subservient to the European authority. The monopolization of political power by the European authority.
3. The Emergence of Pan Africanism.
4. The development of anti-colonial pressure groups such as West African Students Union (WASU), National Congress of British West Africa (NCBWA), The West African Youth League (WAYL) etc.
5. The development of political parties like the national council of Nigeria and Cameroon (NCNC) in Nigeria, United Gold Coast Convention (U.G.C.C.) in Ghana and many others.
6. The imposition of constitutions of Africans.
7. The erroneous opinion by the colonel master that Africans were inferior and had nothing to contribute towards the progress of their states.
3. The Social Factors
1. The Europeans discriminated against African in the area of employment, where Africans were considered worthy only for certain positions in the public service even when they have the same or equivalent qualifications with the Europeans.
2. The Government Reserved Areas (GRAs) were carved out and made comfortable for the Europeans, barring Africans from living in these areas.
3. Making Africans look inferior to their European counterparts and Africans had little or no interaction with the whites as they believed the blacks had nothing to offer to humanity.
4. The removal of African artworks only to be kept in Museums in Europe.
4. Cultural Factors
The relegation of African religion by treating it as primitive and the imposition of alien religion and doctrine by the white man.