The insecurity challenge in Nigeria

The first duty of a government is to keep its citizens safe because only the state has the wherewithal to guarantee security and save society from internal and external threats. There are growing concerns about the state of affairs in Nigeria. Crimes are taking place all over the country in which few of the perpetrators are apprehended. Providing security should be a tradition, a priority. When citizens are secured, the other aspects of governance will be smoothly carried out. Kidnapping, murder, robbery, hooliganism and terrorism are anti-social engagements which undermine governance and threaten collective existence.

Boko Haram is a group of terrorists that have repeatedly threatened the unity and existence of our country and obviously cost the Federal Government a lot of money which should have been put into other productive uses. The economy of this nation would have been better if the security of lives and properties were guaranteed. For example, in the northern part of Nigeria where Boko Haram’s terrorism holds sway, many who would have wished to establish small or medium scale enterprises, thereby generating employment and building the economy, would not do such, considering the wave of killings and maiming going on there. The level of destruction has led to very few or non-existing investments in such areas, thereby suppressing the economy and national development.

Countries with insecurity challenges will always find it difficult to attract foreign investments. People cherish safety for proper execution of their business plans. Developing nations need foreign investors to boost their economy from where it is to where it ought to be; security of lives and properties is the first criterion to be considered in choosing a country for investment.

Bloody clashes between farmers and herdsmen have continued to generate more fear in many agrarian communities in Nigeria. This has impacted negatively on agricultural output across the country.

The insecurity challenge in Nigeria has assumed a frightening dimension that not only requires a multi-stakeholder approach but a unique understanding of both the government and citizens that insecurity is not only threat to life and properties but also to many other aspects of human existence. Insecurity is a devastating consequence of internal upheavals such as unemployment, hunger, starvation, diseases, ignorance, homelessness, environmental degradation and pollution cum socio-economic injustices.

The government can tackle the crimes rate if proper measures are put in place. The welfare of every citizen should be prioritised. Ethno-religious conflicts should be addressed. Social relations (between members of one ethnic or religious group and another in a multi-ethnic and multi-religious society) characterised by lack of cordiality, mutual suspicion and fear, a tendency towards violent confrontations to settle grievances, leading to destruction of lives and properties, can only break the fabric of society. It is high time Nigerians understood that nothing, religion or ethnic differences, should threaten their determination to self-preservation. Because as humans, we must learn how to live with our differences in order to reduce crimes and the insecurity rate in this country.

Oluwaseun F. Ajayi,





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