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GOVERNMENT STRATEGIES AND MANAGEMENT OF SECURITY CHALLENGES IN NIGERIA A CASE STUDY OF FULANI HERDSMEN
This study is to ascertain the level of government Strategies and the management of security challenges in Nigeria using a case study of Fulani Herdsmen. The research design for this study is a quasy-descriptive survey type, the area of this study is Itu local government area in Akwa Ibom State and the population of this study consisted of all adults and adolescents living in Itu local government area. A sample size of 300 respondents was randomly selected using simple random sampling technique. This was done by randomly selecting 75 respondents from each of the 4 clans used for this study. The instrument used by the researcher for this study was a research questionnaire. The study concluded that adoption of close circuit television strategies positively promotes management of security challenges in Nigeria. And the study further recommend that government should come up with policies to create grazing reserves and dams for pasture and water in states that are predominantly Fulani so that they don’t stray long distances in search of pastures.
1.1 Background to the Study
The freedom from danger, care intimidation, apprehension, the feeling or assurance of safety, peace of mind or absence of fear, and the certainty or assurance of the good life or welfare – constitutes one of the fundamental objectives and indeed the foremost responsibility of every government and the state. In Nigeria, the constitution unequivocally spelt out as a fundamental objective and directive principle of state policy that “the security and welfare of the people (of Nigeria) shall be the primary purpose of government” (Section 14 (2) (b) Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999). Nigeria in recent times has witnessed an unprecedented level of insecurity. No wonder national security has become an issue for government, prompting huge allocation of the national budget to security. According to Azazi (2011), in order to check the crime rate in Nigeria, the federal government has embarked on criminalization of terrorism by passing the anti-terrorism Act in 2011, installation of computer-based Closed Circuit Television cameras (CCTV) in some parts of the country, enhancement of surveillance as well as investigation of criminal related offences, heightening of physical security measures around the country aimed at determining or disrupting potential attacks, strengthening of security agencies through the provision of security facilities and the development and broadcast of security tips in mass media. Despite these efforts, the level of insecurity in Nigeria is still high and the country has been consistently ranked low in the Global Peace Index (GPI, 2012), signifying poor state of insecurity in the country as indicated.
The term security has been used to mean protection against or safety from a future risk of severe deprivation, injury or death and requires rules, order and impartial adjudication and application. Security according to Achumba, Ighomereho & Akpo-Robaro (2013) refers to a situation that exists as a result of the establishment of measure for the protecting of persons, information and property against hostile persons, influences and actions. It is the existence of conditions within which people in a society can go about their normal daily activities without any threat to their lives or properties. It embraces all measures designed to protect and safeguard the citizenry and the resources of individuals, groups, businesses and the nation against sabotage or violent occurrence (Achumbo et al, 2013). Security is the protection against all forms of harm whether physical, economic or psychological. It is however argued that security may not be absence of threats or security issues but the ability to rise to the challenges posed by threats with expediency and expertise. Security cannot therefore exist without provision for national security. Aggressive and repressive states can be major sources of human insecurity and a greater source of human suffering.
National security is concerned about those governmental institutions that seek to ensure the physical protection and safety of their citizens, their equal access to the law and protection of from abuse. There are two sets of government systems and institutions concerned with national security. The first component consists of the traditional instruments of national security, namely: the criminal justice system (police, justice and correctional services/prisons) the military and the intelligence community. The second and more important, relates to the nature of governance, its institutions and rules, norms and values that underpin it – as well as the efficacy thereof (Thamos, 2008).
1.2 Statement of Problem
Fulani herdsmen attack and farmer’s clashes has brought a lot of problems to our society including Nigeria. These include death, tears, destruction and so on. The way it is it seems our government has not acted significantly to put this security challenges to an end. Ese Otite of Nigerian National News asked “is the government waiting for all her citizens to fizzle out, before they can take a decisive step to curb the activities of this extremist group? What are the security agencies doing? Or do we say maybe those in power have not been affected either because they and their families move about with convoys filled with security personnel?”
Before now, the herdsmen have been known to wreak havoc in certain communities in Nigeria, but now, the rate at which they commit these crimes has increased exponentially. According to statistics provided by the Institute for Economics and Peace, 1,229 people were killed in 2014, up from 63 in 2013 and Benue State seems to be the hardest hit in recent times. Barely five days to the end of Governor Gabriel Suswam’s administration in May 2015, over 100 farmers and their family members were reportedly massacred in villages and refugee camps located in the Ukura, Per, Gafa and Tse-Gusa local government areas of the state. According to reports, in July 2015, suspected herdsmen attacked Adeke, a community on the outskirts of the state capital, Makurdi. Last December, six persons were killed at Idele village in the Oju local government area. A reprisal attack by youths in the community saw three Fulani herdsmen rate at which they commit these crimes has increased exponentially. According to statistics provided by the Institute for Economics and Peace, 1,229 people were killed in 2014, up from 63 in 2013 and Benue State seems to be the hardest hit in recent times. Barely five days to the end of Governor Gabriel Suswam’s administration in May 2015, over 100 farmers and their family members were reportedly massacred in villages and refugee camps located in the Ukura, Per, Gafa and Tse-Gusa local government areas of the state. According to reports, in July 2015, suspected herdsmen attacked Adeke, a community on the outskirts of the state capital, Makurdi. Last December, six persons were killed at Idele village in the Oju local government area. A reprisal attack by youths in the community saw three Fulani herdsmen
Nigeria is going down a path never seen in her history. It’s a pretty dangerous path, one that the whole world is watching. People are afraid of their safety. At a time, we taught our problem was corruption and power failure, but now security has taken over. With what is happening the President should come out strong and call the shots, he has to face the security challenges. It is very clear that not enough is being done to address their security menaces of the Fulani herdsmen. All they now do is to promote their own religion instead of protecting Nigeria. This government should as a matter of national urgency overhaul our security system. Nigeria occupies an enviable position in the world with abundant natural and human resources. The government should look deeper in order to find a lasting solution to this carnage. Moreover, the truth must be told, we lack the sophisticated weapons to suppress the crisis in the custody of the extremists/criminals. Also, there is inadequate manpower; the number of the extremists/criminals is insignificant.
Due to the peculiarity of the activities of the herdsmen, they move from one place to another in search of pasture. In this process, the herdsmen have reportedly encountered cattle rustlers and made complaints to the relevant authorities who fail to investigate the issue, hence their purported reason for carrying arms about. During their journey, they frequently trespass farmlands owned by locals in their host communities, destroying crops and valuables. Attempts by farmers to prevent them from causing havoc are met with stiff and violent resistance. Most times, the farmers are overpowered, injured and killed, while others are evicted from their homes. Sometimes, the herdsmen take these opportunities to steal, rape, raze houses and kill innocent members of the communities they pass through. And this is as a result of poor management of security by the government.
1.3 Purpose of the Study
The main objective of this study is to ascertain the level of government Strategies and the management of security challenges in Nigeria: a case study of Fulani Herdsmen. While the specific objectives were:
- To examine the effect of adoption of close circuit television on the management of security challenges in Nigeria
- To examine the effect of community security watch on the management of security challenges in Nigeria
- To examine the effect of surveillance on the management of security challenges in Nigeria
1.4 Research Questions
The following research questions will be answered:
- What is the effect of adoption of close circuit television on the management of security challenges in Nigeria?
- What is the effect of community security watch on the management of security challenges in Nigeria?
- What is the effect of surveillance on the management of security challenges in Nigeria?
The following research hypotheses will be tested:
- There is no significant effect of adoption of close circuit television on the management of security challenges in Nigeria
- There is no significant effect of community security watch on the management of security challenges in Nigeria
- There is no significant the effect of surveillance on the management of security challenges in Nigeria
1.6 Significance of the Study
This study is expected to be of immense help to the government, security personnel and Nigerian Security Council as well as policy makers. It may also be of help to improve upon security management in our society. The result of this study is expected to provide data for planning, as well as provide additional stock of security data for other researchers, who might find it relevant and useful in their enquiries.
The study will fill the gap of knowledge of what has not been done by the past researchers who conducted almost similar study with regard to security management. The researcher will offer solutions to some practical or theoretical problems. This work also will be of benefit to the tertiary institution students, Ministry of Education and teachers, Parents and Guardians.
Lastly, the study will serve as a requirement in partial fulfillment for the award of bachelor of science in criminology and security studies.
1.7 Scope of the study
The study was delimited to government Strategies and the management of security challenges in Nigeria a case study of Fulani Herdsmen. However, the study used Itu Local government as a study area.
1.8 Limitation of the Study
Difficulty in gathering materials especially relevant to the study was a challenge since the study is not common. This caused scarcity of relevant research materials from local papers. Hence, the researcher had to rely greatly on the foreign materials in order to put up this work.
Another challenge faced by the researcher was lack of fund and limited time for the undertaking and submission of this work.