An Assessment Of The Security Management In Nigeria (The Boko Haram Challenge)

Project and Seminar Material for Criminology And Security Studies

An Assessment Of The Security Management In Nigeria (The Boko Haram Challenge)


Terrorism and insurgency is globally becoming a house hold word as there is no nation that is completely absolved from its effect. Since its advent in Nigeria, the sectarian insurgency has wrecked immense havoc in the country, especially by “using explosives and firearms with gruesome, total consequences. The alarming level of the terrorists attacks in different parts of the country has had drastic unpalatable consequences on the economy of the nation at large and not just on these various parts. The national Assembly in 2011 passed the Anti-Terrorism Act with the aim to address the threat to national security and combat the increasing crime rate in the country. Despite this, Nigeria is ranked relatively low on the Global peace Index. Due to this, Nigeria is confronted with development challenges. These challenges includes gross poverty, high rate of unemployment, debilitating youth unemployment, low industrial output, unstable and deteriorating exchange rate, high inflation rate, inadequate physical and social infrastructure, very large domestic debt and rising stock of external debt.

Table Of Content

Preliminary Page(s)

  • Title page
  • Certification page
  • Dedication
  • Acknowledgement
  • Abstract
  • Table of content

Chapter One


  • 1.1 Background Of The Study
  • 1.2 Statement Of The Problem
  • 1.3 Objectives Of The Study
  • 1.4 Research Questions
  • 1.5 Significance Of The Study
  • 1.6 Research Methodology

Chapter Two

Review Of Related Literature

  • 2.1 Introduction
  • 2.2 Conceptual Review
  • 2.2.1 Concept Of Terrorism
  • 2.2.2 Historical Antecedent And Phases Of Attacks On The Nigerian State
  • 2.2.3 The Growth Of The Sect
  • 2.3 Political Bokoharam: A Threat To Nigerian State
  • 2.3.1 Domestic And Foreign Actions Against The Bokoharam Sect In Nigeria

Chapter Three

A Critical Analysis Of The Efforts By The Government To Arrest The Insurgence

  • 3.1 Implication Of Boko Haram Insurgence
  • 3.2 Sources Of Data Collection
  • 3.3 Population Of The Study
  • 3.4 Sample And Sampling Procedure
  • 3.5 Instrument For Data Collection
  • 3.6 Validation Of The Research Instrument
  • 3.7 Method Of Data Analysis

Chapter Four

Presentation Analysis Interpretation Of Data

  • 4.1 Introduction
  • 4.2 Data Analysis

Chapter Five

Summary, Conclusion And Recommendation

  • 5.1 Introduction
  • 5.2 Summary
  • 5.3 Conclusion
  • 5.4 Recommendations
  • Reference
  • Questionnaire

Chapter One


1.1 Background Of The Study

It is a common knowledge that Nigeria since her return to civil rule in 1999 faces some national security challenges across the six geo-political zones in the country. The spate of bomb blasts, kidnapping, pipeline vandalism and other forms of criminalities in recent times in various parts of the country are emerging trends of domestic terrorism. In fact, the high rate of kidnappings, armed robbery and political assassinations, are added dimensions to the security challenges, which are stretching the nation to its limits, sometimes constitute a great threat to the very fabric of its existence. (Abimbola and Adesote 2012) A number of analysts have variously attributed the disturbing trend to political dissatisfaction, ethnic and religious differences, perceived societal neglect and pervasive poverty among the people. However, the outbreak of Boko Haram insurgency in Nigeria marked yet another phase in the recurring pattern that violent uprising, riots and disturbances have become in Nigeria.

Given the heterogeneous nature of the Nigerian society, the religious sensitivity of Nigerians, and the prolonged military rule that ended with the advent of civil rule in 1999, the situation could perhaps not have been different. But what is alarming is the forceful attempt by religious fundamentalist to impose a religious ideology on a constitutionally recognized secular society (Nwogu 2012:43). Boko Haram poses an enormous and complex threat to national security and not only has it been inimical to human security, economic development and political stability, it has also portends harmful ramifications for the corporate existence of Nigeria.

Thus, it could be argued that it is the governments’ inability to efficiently address poverty and unemployment and other social malaise inimical to the good life that have combined to create an environment in which religious sects like the Boko Haram flourished. Some cases, the situations had gotten worse. There is massive poverty; lack of access to educational opportunities, unemployment and ignorance due to limited educational opportunities; and government corruption, including misuse of resources, by which the people were repulsed. (Usman 1987, Ale 2009) In this direction, the maintenance of law and order in Nigeria has been very challenging to the extent that the ability to manage internal security by security agencies is being doubted by the citizenry.

The government which is constitutionally charged to provide security and ensure the welfare of all persons within the polity has although, taken some steps to address these emerging trends of violence and suicide bombings that pose major challenges to security in Nigeria but these efforts have not proven effective. Security is said to mean the quality or state of being secured. It implies freedom from danger, freedom from fear or anxiety and freedom from the prospect of being laid off. Security from these perspective is holistic and encapsulates the total well being of a person in persons (Nwogu 2012) It is against this background that this research is anchored to investigate the origin, ideology and activities of the dreaded Boko Haram sect and its effects on the management of security in Nigeria. The research will also examine the response of the Nigeria government to the threat posed by Boko Haram with a view to suggest possible solutions/strategies to address the scourge.

1.2 Statement Of The Problem

Currently, the issue of Boko Haram cannot be over-looked, particularly as it has become one of the greatest threats to government in Nigeria. The activities of the group threaten the fabrics of Nigeria and are capable of disintegrating the country. It is pertinent to state that Boko Haram has taken a new dimension and has continued to improve on the methods of attacking their targets. It has advanced from the stages of assassination, gunpowder plot to that of bomb-planting explosive attacks, suicide bombing, sporadic shooting in busy areas, including schools, supermarkets, religious places and more recently kidnapping e.g. the kidnap incident of the Chibok school girls that attracted the attention of the international community. Nwogu (2012:43) observed that Boko Haram has grown from an issue of local nuisance to a frontier of international terror.

Its heady rise to international terror group status has been marked by unabated audacious and brutal terror attacks that have shaken the country to her roots. More so, Boko Haram poses enormous and complex threat to the management of national security in Nigeria, which is a major challenge to human security and economic development. Akinferinwa (2011:109) pointed out that Boko Haram is undoubtedly one of the problems in Nigeria. He noted that it is a major component part of the problem. And also stated that, Boko Haramists do play the role of a catalytic agent in the worsening of one Nigeria’s main problems; national unity. From this viewpoint, it can be seen that Boko Haram is a serious challenge to security in Nigeria, thus, this research is focused to examine the extent of threat by Boko Haram with a view to propose comprehensive framework to address the problem.

1.3 Objectives Of The Study

The main purpose of the research is to take a critical look at the challenges posed by Boko Haram to the management of security in Nigeria and to explain its effect on the development of Nigeria. Therefore, in summary, the research is aimed at the following objectives.

  1. To attempt a critical study on the origin, ideology and activities of Boko Haram.
  2. To examine the extent at which Boko Haram has affected the security situation in Nigeria.
  3. To explore how Boko Haram terrors has impacted on Nigeria, politically, economically, socially and otherwise.
  4. To reveal the response of the Nigeria state to the challenges posed by Boko Haram.
  5. To recommend strategies and policies that may be possible solutions to address the Boko Haram challenge.

1.4 Research Questions

  1. Was it poverty and illiteracy that resulted in the formation of Boko Haram?
  2. To what extent has Boko Haram worsened the security situation in Nigeria?
  3. How has Boko Haram terror affected Nigeria politically, socially, economically and otherwise?
  4. In what ways has the Nigerian government responded to the Boko Haram threats?
  5. What are the possible strategies to tackle the scourge of Boko Haram?

1.5 Significance Of The Study

In recent times, many scholars and commentators have written and commented elaborately on the insecurity situation of the country, particularly, arising from terrorism. However, this study focuses squarely on the Boko Haram phenomenon and management of security in Nigeria. This will help in understanding the activities of the terror group and explore steps to address its menace. The study is also significant because it will contribute to existing literature on terrorism, especially on Boko Haram and the issue of security, which will further encourage research into this area.

1.6 Research Methodology

The researcher used descriptive research survey design in building up this project work the choice of this research design was considered appropriate because of its advantages of identifying attributes of a large population from a group of individuals. The design was suitable for the study as the study sought to assess the security management system in Nigeria

Chapter Five

Summary, Conclusion And Recommendation

5.1 Introduction

It is important to ascertain that the objective of this study was on an assessment of security management in Nigeria; the Boko Haram challenges.

In the preceding chapter, the relevant data collected for this study were presented, critically analyzed and appropriate interpretation given. In this chapter, certain recommendations made which in the opinion of the researcher will be of benefits in addressing the challenges of security management in Nigeria.

5.2 Summary

We have explored the chances of Nigeria’s survival as a nation in view of the numerous security challenges that confront the state presently. We have also pondered on possible redemptive measures and the most likely of various efforts to adopt to contain the insurgents. Nigeria was created as a territorial unit under the colonial powers. In the words of Myron Weiner (1966:643), “national integration is the process of bringing together culturally and socially discrete groups into a single territorial unit and the establishment of a national identity” that should have begun in the colonial period and intensified after independence, has not been very successful in the case of Nigeria and this is at the root of the insurgency, militant and terrorism that the country is facing. It has also been argued that injustice resulted to the birth of insurgents and their nefarious activities. Efforts should be made and intensified to nip the activities of the insurgents in the bud to ensure peace, national security and development.

5.3 Conclusion

Though Nigeria today contends with the issue of Boko-Haram, and high level of insecurity, Iroko (2011) observed that we cannot be sure what will happen tomorrow. The nation ought to have learnt from the multitude of conflicts in Nigeria to be proactive and stop acting as an arm chair theorist on grave issues of national security that consistently threatens the corporate existence of Nigeria and renders the nation relatively economically impotent. While the government cannot fold his hands in the face of monumental destruction of lives and property, the prolonged attacks by the sect is a reflection that the nation has not learnt or develop the strategy to cope with homeland security such as was done in the US after the September 11 attack. Mohammed (2011) added that violent uprisings in Nigeria are ultimately due to “the fallout of frustration with corruption and the attendant social malaise of poverty and unemployment”.

The study therefore concludes that the current high level of insecurity in Nigeria is not insurmountable given an objective analysis of the causative factors and adoption of correct institutional mechanisms to address the multi- dimensional issues involved. Such issues apart from those reflected in Mohammed (2011) above include the inability to mobilize the masses to support government measures in order to curb the insurgence as every fact point in the direction that the sect enjoys the support of high and low disgruntled elements particularly in the north. The unsolicited support was easily given to the sect because of the manner the insurgence was approached like declaration of war that equally leave the members of the public to suffer from the sect as well as the military that ought to protect them. The study further conclude that the near absolute silence of prominent Northern traditional rulers until of late and respected individuals and their inability to call their subjects to order believing that they are respected by their subjects spoke volume.

The study in addition concludes that the failure of government to resolve all the issues associated with Boko-Haram insurgence may equally lead to non-Muslim elements in the south that are frustrated with general hardship in the nation to hide under the banner of BokoHaram to unleash terror in the south. This might lead to unimaginable crises that the result that might shake the very foundation of the corporate existence of Nigeria. There might be multi- dimensional approaches to finding lasting solution to social problems but a definite course of action is required that might not leave bad precedence and create the impression that government is confused. The removal of General Azazi and the replacement with Col.Sambo (Rtd) is a bad signal for sustainable peace since it was observed that the prominent Northerners were not comfortable with southern National Security Adviser. The implication is that when a particular geo-political entity is no longer comfortable with Mr President, the nation will encounter another round of violence which is not good for the corporate existence of Nigeria. The study therefore recommends that the government must put up sincere measures to address the high rate of poverty and unemployment particularly by modernizing agriculture and provide incentives for industrialization such as in Malaysia, India and China.

Poverty and unemployment make crime very attractive and irresistible to our teaming youth as an idle hand is the cheapest instrument in the hand of the devil. The study is conscious of the fact that the ideology of the sect is more important to them than the issue of worldly gains but equitable distribution of wealth by ensuring that people are gainfully employed may reduce the tendency of getting more youth recruited into the sect. In addition, the experience of shortage and high cost of vegetable and food items in the south was a reflection of collective failure of agricultural programmes of the southern governments. These crops were produced through irrigation in the north while same could be planted three times yearly in the south without irrigation. The study argues that the south should relatively be selfsufficient in the production selected range of vegetables while that does remove interdependence nature based on seasons. The whole south need not experience shortage on account of the crisis or crop failure in the north. It is therefore recommended that the southern governors should embark on genuine agriculture development like it was done in the west during the First Republic to complement those of the north.

5.4 Recommendations

Haven completed the study, the researcher recommends the review of the Federal Government approach to handling political or other related crises as peace approach is more successful than security approach. The adoption of peace approach will allow the government to understand the motivating force or reason behind actions and adopt measure ranging from consultation or peaceful intervention rather excessive militarization to suppress rather than resolve conflicts. The use of force with the intent of eliminating or suppressing opponents is like operating under security approach that often ends up in generating greater violence. Peace approach often wants to see the opponents as potential friends if the situation is carefully handled. Hence, government should adopt more of peace approach in resolving its internal political conflicts. Also, the government should wake from its slumber and overcome the weak defence of not identifying the group leaders of Boko Haram as such argument is porous if the US can name Abubakar Sekiu, Abubakar Adam Kambar and Khalid al-Barnawi as global/foreign terrorists.

The essence is for government to involve the cross section of Northern Emirs and prominent individuals in a genuine dialogue with the leaders of the group. This however does not mean thatgovernment should shy away from meting out deserving punishment to those found guilty of criminal activities. In addition, the government should adopt an effective measure to ensure homeland security. This arrangement must evolve from the grass root believing that if every village or town is secured, the nation will in turn be secured. This implies that the traditional rulers and local notables in each local government within the nation must be effectively accommodated into local policing provided they were not imposed by the government on helpless communities.

The study further recommends a change in the mind-set of those in government as they often read ethnic, religious or political sentiment to any conflict. This was not done according to Dibia, (2012) because the political leaders passionately hate contrary views that tend to interrogate the status-quo. This situation is certainly not healthy for a federation with diverse religious, social, political, economic, cultural, educational and professional interests. Hence, the government must be tolerant of opposing views as the security of the nation is the collective responsibility of all irrespective of political, religious or ethnic affiliation.

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