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GOVERNMENT AND THE MANAGEMENT OF SECURITY CHALLENGES IN NIGERIA
Security concerns have existed since time immemorial. But, the challenges have never been as readily manifested as they are presently. This is rather disconcerting. Moreso, because some of the security challenges and problems we encounter daily in the contemporary society are almost entirely unpredictable. Indeed, rapid growth and use of mechanical arts, applied science, and revolutionary dynamics of society apparently blend well with the desperate nature of the criminally minded to increase the spate of threats to life and property, a state which has assumed omnipresent and digital dimensions of crime in our society. The aim of this study is to examine Government and the Management of Security Challenges in Nigeria: a case of Akwa Ibom State (1999-2011). Governments, all over the world are accountable for the provision of security and well-being of their citizens through the use of instruments of state power, including defense and security agencies, backed-up by enabling laws. For instance, the 1999 Nigerian constitution outlines the role of government and relationship among levels of government in security management. During the period, Akwa Ibom State had suffered myriad of internal security challenges namely; kidnappings and hostage takings for monetary gains, murder and political assassinations, armed robberies, cult-related criminal activities and subversion. Others include illegal possession of fire arms, insurgency, economic sabotage, oil pipelines and NEPA installations vandalization, arson and fire outbreaks and boundary disputes. This work used descriptive statistics (including charts and tabular analysis) to analyze the role of government in security management. The study however, focused on security challenges arising from dereliction of statutory duties by police personnel due to poor salary, insufficient funding and equipping of security agencies with consequent high crime rates. This work adopted structural functionalist and levels 1, 2, 3 models as theoretical frameworks. The study recommends that government at all levels should motivate, approve good remuneration to security and law enforcement agents, properly fund and equip security agencies to boost their operational capabilities for effective protection of lives and property of the citizens.
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