An Assessment Of Traditional Security Strategies In Tackling Banditry In Nigeria: An Analysis Of Kuje Prison Incidence In Abuja

Project and Seminar Material for Criminology And Security Studies

An Assessment Of Traditional Security Strategies In Tackling Banditry In Nigeria


The research examines the possibility of combating banditry through traditional security strategies in Nigeria, Aside from poverty, unemployment, religious intolerance, economic and political instability, Nigeria is currently confronted with a more serious and pervasive threat of terrorism, especially in the country’s Northeast. Kidnapping, bombing, and occasional attacks by gunmen at many churches, mosques, public places, police stations, schools, Nigeria, like most developing countries, face a variety of security problems, Nigeria is surrounded by armed banditry. It has threatened the soul of Nigerian national security with the insurgency. development in Nigeria has been complicated by several factors. Among the complexities is the rise of criminal organizations that undertake a personality and economically active criminal career. This Research aims objective is To examine the operations of Banditry, To know what are the strategies and activities of banditry, What are operations of banditry in Nigeria This research would adopt the simple random sampling technique to give each element of the population an equal chance of being selected, and from a population of 200 respondents, The findings revealed an urgent need to examine current banditry strategies and peacebuilding initiative played a vital role in counter-terrorism and counter-insurgency, which are the primary strategies used to resolve ongoing conflicts, with a greater emphasis on banditry that focuses on addressing the root causes of banditry such as poverty, unemployment, inequality, and illiteracy.

The survey method was employed in the collection of data through the instrumentality of the questionnaire. “Interviews were conducted to get first-hand information about the root causes of the banditry from the people at the grassroots who are most affected by the crises. peace building initiative through Traditional institutions plays a significant position in the Nigerian environment, making them important in the battle against banditry. It is important to note here that the reactions of the Nigerian government appear to be soft in handling the bandits, a situation that might become unmanageable and unending like Boko Haram. In conclusion, this research work will contribute to the existing knowledge and useful for scholars, security institutions and researchers as the research would to used to check the effect and strategies of banditry in Nigeria

Table of Content

  • Certification
  • Dedication
  • Acknowledgement
  • Table of Content
  • List of Tables
  • Abstract

Chapter One:


  • 1.1 Background of the study
  • 1.2 Statement of the problem
  • 1.3 Objective of the study
  • 1.4 Research question
  • 1.5 Research Hypothesis
  • 1.6 Significance of the Study
  • 1.7 Scope of the study
  • 1.8 Limitation of the study
  • 1.9 Definition of Terms
  • 1.10 Organization of the study

Chapter Two:

Review of Literature

  • 2.1 Conceptual Framework
  • 2.2 Theoretical Framework
  • 2.3 Empirical Review

Chapter Three:

Research Methodology

  • 3.1 Introduction
  • 3.2 Research Design
  • 3.3 Population of the Study
  • 3.4 Sample Size Determination
  • 3.5 Sample Size Selection Technique and Procedure
  • 3.6 Research Instrument and Administration
  • 3.7 Method of Data Collection
  • 3.8 Method of Data Analysis
  • 3.9 Validity of the Study
  • 3.10 Reliability of the Study
  • 3.11 Ethical Consideration

Chapter Four:

Data Presentation and Analysis

  • 4.1 Data Presentation
  • 4.2 Analysis of Research Questions
  • 4.3 Test of Hypothesis
  • 4.4 Discussion of findings

Chapter Five:

Summary Conclusion and Recommendation

  • 5.1 Summary
  • 5.2 Conclusion
  • 5.3 Recommendation
  • References
  • Appendix

Chapter One


1.1 Background to the Study

Banditry is a terminology that refers to the nature or incidence of assault and robbery or gun violence. It entails the use of force, or the use of intimidation to bully people in order to deprive them, rape, or murder them. Banditry is a violent crime against individuals. It has become a prevalent form of crime in contemporary cultures, as well as a source of terror (Nigeria Watch, 2011). Banditry seems to have been prevalent in Nigeria for a long period and has been increasing in recent years. According to Rotberg (2007), “crime against individuals, including homicide, kidnapping, and theft, has increased in scope and severity in Nigeria since 1999.” This is illustrated by the prevalent pattern of armed robbery in the region, which reflects the experience of Africa as a whole.

Since 2009 insecurity in Nigeria’s northeast has lost over 20,000 lives and displaced more than 2 million others. Livelihoods have been disrupted throughout the country, and houses, public buildings, and utilities have been damaged. Much has been lost in a part of Nigeria where agriculture is the 80 percent of the population’s primary source of income. Homeowners were evicted, and cattle was killed. Land mines and other remnants of conflict continue to pose a threat to national stability and peaceful reintegration in a number of countries.

Banditry has recently become a harsh reality in today’s Nigerian society, manifesting itself in various forms such as insurgency, abduction, suicide bombings, self-suicide bombing, corruption, armed robbery, and so on. Enders and Sandler (Enders & Sandler, 2002; Lake, 2000) Numerous efforts have been made to mitigate these threats’ impact on Nigerian culture, but none have succeeded. (Luechinger 2013)

The Nigerian government has attempted to use a counter-insurgency policy. Through the imposition of penalties, coercion may be used as a policy deterrent to prevent actual attempts by others. putting appropriate measures in order to mitigate the danger of banditry in the nation Despite this, the country’s degree of insecurity remains strong, leading Nigeria to be branded as a failed state. The Global Peace Index (GPI, 2012) consistently ranks low, suggesting a deteriorating state of peace. There is a sense of uncertainty in the region. Ajibola (2015) Aluforo, Uhumwuangho, and Uhumwuangho (2011) believe that the government’s efforts have not produced many positive results.

With a major emphasis on development, the Nigerian economy has seen a rise in spending on military hardware, as well as equipping personnel protection systems and training to make them more effective in dealing with insurgent phenomena and ensuring economic growth sustainability (Ruys, 2004) Nigeria is regarded as an emerging superpower, with estimated annual growth rates above 7%, making the Nigerian economy one of the fastest developing in the world. ( The recurrent Boko Haram insurgencies in the country’s north-eastern region are still the country’s most recent act of terrorism. These terrorists’ techniques, methods, and mode of operation are similar to and competent in contrast to terrorist philosophies and practices found elsewhere in the world. The dreadful epidemic of terrorism has tarnished Nigeria’s reputation and legitimacy in the eyes of the rest of the world.

Security, peace, stability, and good governance, according to the African Union, are all basic requirements for any nation’s sustainable socio-economic growth. It has been argued that adequate protection and growth are inextricably linked (Nwanegbo & Odigbo, 2013; Chandler, Ewetan & Urhie, 2014, as quoted in Ewetan & Urhie, 2007). While most policymakers around the world have made peace and prosperity their primary target and focus in recent decades, security issues have remained a significant impediment to meaningful socioeconomic growth in the majority of African countries., especially Nigeria. Insecurity not only puts citizens’ lives and property at risk, but it also discourages local enterprises, scares away foreign investment, and gives the country a negative picture (Ekene, 2015)

These threats’ security issues have become a global phenomenon that must be addressed as a matter of urgency to establish an enabling climate for socioeconomic growth. Nigeria has experienced a significant setback in its socio-economic growth for over a decade, owing to the revival of various security challenges, including armed banditry, abduction, cybercrime, and the Boko Haram insurgency (Nkewede, 2015; Epron, 2018). Despite the government’s attempts to end the disturbing situation by spending over 462 million on national security over the last five years, Nigeria’s security situation remains the country’s biggest barrier to socioeconomic growth (Olufemi, 2015) Nigeria, Africa’s giant, is still regarded as a developing country, with low wages, life expectancy, access to safe drinking water, and crime rates, among other socioeconomic indicators (Ewetan & Urhie, 2014). Nigeria is not prone to unusual insurgency, which brings with it political uncertainty, a crisis of long-term socioeconomic growth, and a crisis of legitimacy. Since its independence in 1960, Nigeria has been subjected to terrorist attacks such as the maitasine of 1980 and 1982 (Ogundiya & Amzat, 2008), the Campaign for the Liberation of the Niger Delta (MEND) between 2000 and 2010, and the Boko Haram Terrorist Crisis, which has devastated the country since 2009.

Much has been written about the origins, goals, and scope of banditry in Nigeria began as a result of the government’s attempts to resuscitate the nation’s socio-economic problems caused by rebels from the Niger Delta. This has remained current and is a major source of concern for the Nigerian government and the private sector. The insurgency has recently become a critical problem in Nigeria’s fight for good governance, long-term stability, and long-term socioeconomic growth, according to the government in particular.

The main danger and safety threats stem from unheard-of attacks on Nigerians, people, public and government facilities and property kidnapping and destruction. Boko haram is a serious crime against the State of Nigeria, which threatens its national security and its socio-economic activity. The main objective of the Nigerian Federal republic’s ground security strategy is to reinforce its interests and goals, reduce insecurity, monitor criminality, ensure the good quality of life of all citizens, enhance the good standard of living and eradicate corruption. This poses great challenges (Adekanye, 2007)

There are also many reasons behind the demands for the reconstruction of traditional institutions in the safety management of Nigeria through the peace-building initiative. First, in their different cultures, the representatives of traditional institutions take strategic roles to make them more close to local people. Secondly, conventional organizations have a well-established administrative system for intelligence collection within different communities.

Moreover, it is argued that insurgents are not individuals, but people that live within the societies and that the representatives of conventional institutions should effectively guard them. Given this context, it is imperative to research the various Traditional Security Strategies in the management of banditry in Nigeria The study also investigated how efficiencies can be achieved between the Traditional Security Strategies and the contemporary security agencies in Nigeria.

1.2 Statement of the Problem

Nigeria, on the other hand, is currently a nation in crisis. The country’s problems are most apparent in the heavy storm wave of violent banditry and crime that has swept through numerous regions. Nothing better illustrates this strange situation than northern Nigeria’s unthinkably uncertain security environment. Northeastern Nigeria is now clearly under the insurgency scourge, despite the government’s precarious counter-insurgency efforts (Okoli 2017; Zenn 2018). The province’s north-central region has been ravaged by herdsmen militancy, plunging the country into a humanitarian crisis (Okoli and Ogayi 2018). The northwest area has recently become enmeshed in a dramatic increase in rural banditry along both its foreign and forested borders. For the majority of 2019, Nigeria’s South-West area was under threat as a product of pervasive insecurity, with bandits taking disturbing dimensions, kidnappers operating untamed, and herdsmen committing wanton destruction of lives and property at will. Indeed, the Region was reeling from alarming levels of murder, abduction, and rape, as well as other life-threatening events that rendered city centres and highways dangerous for residents and travellers. On June 25, 2019, gunmen ambushed a commuter bus on Akure-Ikere Road, and all passengers were reportedly abducted and whisked away to unknown destinations. Recently, relatives and survivors have recounted a string of heartbreaking accounts of attacks perpetrated by killer herdsmen and other yet-to-be-identified criminal elements terrorizing the people of the South-West Region (Adeyemi, et al, 2019). Travellers and motorists are having a difficult time getting around. How kidnappers launch attacks from the woods, firing sporadically in the air and carting away their victims instils fear in residents whenever they are about to embark on a road trip, especially in the evening. As a result, vehicular traffic on certain roads in the district began to thin out. The most affected roads include the ever-busy Ibadan-Akure Road, Ondo-Ife Road, Osogbo-Ode Omu Road, Ado Ekiti-Akure Road, Ondo-Ife, Oshogbo-Ilesha Road, and Ado Ekiti-Akure Road, while the Imeko-Abeokuta Road was virtually abandoned as a result of frequent attacks by herdsmen. As a result, commercial vehicles would travel in convoys with escorts. Farmers in Oke-Ogun, Oyo State, have taken to fleeing their farmlands at the sight of advancing herds of cattle, as survivors of attacks have often described their assailants and kidnappers as resembling herdsmen, while some are often dressed in military gear (Adeyemi, et al, 2019). As Nigeria reorganizes strategies to manage the menace of banditry experienced as a result of the socio-economic growth of the Boko Haram insurgency, new emerging security challenges quickly pave the way for earlier socio-economic threats either complementing or replacing. Among other things, the recent rise of armed banditry, abduction in Nigeria has posed a challenge to Nigeria’s social and economic growth. the situation can be described as nasty and brutal in his state of nature as described by Thomas Hobbes. Furthermore, The Nigerian crisis cannot be treated as an internal conflict anymore because there is absolute evidence of the group’s links to foreign terrorist organizations.

1.3 Objectives of the Study

The aim of the study are listed as follows:

  1. To examine the operations of Banditry in Nigeria
  2. To identify the extent and natures of Banditry in Nigeria
  3. To investigate why has banditry increased in Nigeria
  4. To know what are the strategies and activities of banditry in Nigeria

1.4 Research Questions

This research work attempted to answer the following questions

The following questions are to be addressed by the study:

  1. What is the extent and nature of Banditry in Nigeria?
  2. Why has Banditry increased in northeast Nigeria?
  3. What are the strategies and activities of banditry in Nigeria?
  4. What are the operations of banditry in Nigeria?

1.5 Research Hypothesis

The research made the following assumptions:-

Ho: There is no significant difference in the involvement of arm bandits in Nigeria

H1: There is a significant difference in the involvement of bandit in the insurgency in Nigeria.

1.6 Significance of the Study

This research work is important in several perspectives would be useful to future Researcher, Academic, lawmakers, security institutions .those who may be interested in this matter to Traditional institutions and other conflicts resolution stakeholders to mention but a few.

It is hoped that the research will contribute towards bridging the gap of knowledge by evaluating peace building initiative in combating banditry in North-Eastern Nigeria, through assessing the role of various institutions leaders in counter insurgence as a measure for combating terrorism in Nigeria.

1.7 Scope of the Study

The scope covered by the study in combating banditry through peace-building initiative and measures in combating Banditry activities carried out in Nigeria. The study will cover the recent Kuje Prison Incidence In Abuja.

1.8 Limitation of the Study

Although some of the obstacles were overcome quickly, others proved more difficult. Rather than discouraging the scholar, the difficulties faced served as motivators and the study’s guiding power. One of the difficulties the researcher encountered was gaining access to vital information, since Bandits’ operations are more feared, and not everybody is willing to share information due to the security consequences.

Financial Restriction

Inadequate funding tends to impair the researcher’s productivity in locating relevant materials, literature, or records, as well as in the data collection phase (internet, questionnaire and interview).

Time Restriction

The researcher will conduct this thesis while still pursuing other academic activities. As a result, the amount of time spent on field work will be reduced.

1.9 Definition of Terms


The term “bandit” refers to a person, especially a criminal, who commits crimes through the use of firearms, but who, as the most common has neither a fixed territory nor clear geographic jurisdiction.


Human conflict exists since the ancient period. A salient feature of human culture is that human beings are emotional creatures who change their ideas when they discover new information.

1.10 Organizations of the Study

  • The chapter one consist of the introductory part of the study which includes the study background, the statement of the research problem, the study objective and scope of the study.
  • The second chapter is a critical review of other literatures relevant to the study and its objectives including the theoretical framework for the study.
  • While the third chapter is methods of data collection, sampling and data analysis used in conducting the study.
  • The fourth chapter centres around the research findings including an analysis of how it relates to previous findings.
  • The fifth chapter consists of the summary of findings, conclusion and recommendations base on the study objectives.

Chapter Five

Summary, Conclusion and Recommendations

5.1 Summary of Findings

The central issue addressed in this research is how to overcome the lingering banditry and other problems that could result in conflicts in Nigeria, which have crippled the country for a long time. It has wreaked havoc on the Nigerian population innumerable ways. The northwest is fairly stable in comparison to the northeast, although it is poorer; less well in certain areas; and has transformed the state into a battleground for terrorists and the Nigerian military. The economic situation is decreasing daily due to the loss of lives (murder, kidnapping, and cattle rustling); no one is willing to invest in a violent environment; agricultural production is at a standstill; business activities, shops, and commercial businesses are at a standstill; and educational institutions are at a standstill. The government seems to be simplifying the complexities. Indeed, northwest Nigeria has developed into a safe place for a growing number of terrorist organizations, including the Islamic State in the Greater Sahara (ISGS)

There is no doubt that governments at all levels, federal, state, and local, as well as the people, have attempted to restore peace in the state through a variety of strategies, including the military counterinsurgency strategy, the proposed amnesty and dialogue with terrorist groups, and governments’ willingness and readiness to negotiate with terrorist groups. With the help of the state government, hunter groups have been created. International organisations such as the United Nations, the European Union, and ECOWAS have assisted the global joint task force (MJTF), as well as non-governmental organizations (NGOs) that offer humanitarian assistance to war victims, but none of it has resulted in the desired outcome.

Other findings include:

  1. Traditional ruler played a vital role in building peace initiatives in northeast Nigeria. Over 70% of the strategies adopted by the traditional rulers were successful and helpful in the fight against insurgency
  2. The finding revealed, banditry affects many aspects of livelihoods and must be tackled to increase the quality of life. Additionally, risk reduction strategies for crises must be implemented to reduce the instability associated with banditry.

5.2 Conclusion

In conclusion, Small arms and light firearms must be regulated or eliminated to carry out effective steps against bandits. Rural banditry associated with cattle rustling, on the other hand, has several aspects, including connections to diminishing human safety and state resources, as well as challenges on land and water supplies triggered by the combined impact of land grabbing, climate change, and environmental destruction. Raids inside the region are allegedly to blame for underdevelopment, according to the inquiry. The study’s objective was followed, and the general finding is that banditry has affected various countries in the world, resulting in deaths, immigration, poverty, high levels of illiteracy, and widespread hunger in the population. Nigeria and the rest of the country are troubled with banditry. According to the study’s conclusions, insurgency affects many aspects of people’s lives and must be tackled to increase the overall quality of life. Additionally, risk management mechanisms for tensions must be implemented to ensure that insecurity is contained and controlled.

Furthermore, the need to involve peace building initiatives in managing terrorism and insurgency within the African societal settings were necessitated for lack of adequate modern surveillance technologies such as close circuit cameras as obtained in many developed countries such as Britain, Russia and the United States of America that can help in monitoring the activities of the people in the communities.

The research identified one of the difficulties faced by the security agencies in banditry and other security challenges in Nigeria that makes it imperative to re-examine the idea of the formal reintegration of traditional institutions with the contemporary security agencies. Doing so will enable the two institutions to achieve a synergy that will facilitate effective management of security problems especially those relating to terrorism and insurgency. creating a modality such as the restructuring of the traditional institutions administratively to allow the ward heads to communicate intelligence information to contemporary security agencies directly without adhering to the rigid hierarchal procedure will help by way of intelligence gallery

5.3 Recommendation of the Study

Any meaningful conflict resolution activity should begin with elders and youth as key participants. Livelihood activities are viewed as critical in resolving the Nigerian problem of banditry. As warriors and some youths are the primary actors in conflicts, raiding animals, killing people, and destroying property, these various groups must be educated and equipped with skills and information that would enable the youth to engage in other productive activities. Parents will be more effective peace ambassadors if they encourage their children and young people to attend school and acquire skills rather than encouraging them to engage in banditry.

To put an end to the insurgency in Nigeria, immediate measures to curb banditry must be implemented. Consultative systems involving community leaders and opinion leaders at the community level must be encouraged through peace building initiatives. This must be followed by state governors and city councils. It is not merely surrendering responsibility for the issue to Abuja. If governors maintain their commitment to fiscal federalism, they must establish these consultative mechanisms. It has proven to be effective in a variety of fields. Governments must address the development issues affecting the masses as a result of the country’s high rate of poverty.

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