Effectiveness Of The Law Enforcement Agency

Project and Seminar Material for Criminology And Security Studies

Effectiveness Of The Law Enforcement Agency


There has been a rising concern on the security of the country. This project is focused on studying the effect of Law enforcement agency in the Surulere Nigerian police force. The study made use of both primary and secondary data. And the research instrument used was the questionnaire administered to a sample size of 100 respondents. From the test result of hypothesis one, the study discovered that inadequate training does significantly contribute to ineffective crime control by the law enforcement agencies in Nigeria and hypothesis two shows that the effort of the law enforcement agents in creating a safer Nigeria is greatly hampered by unavailability of modern crime gadgets.

Chapter One


1.1 Background of the Study

The relationship between police and citizens must be informed by the ethical and professional principles that allow for the effectiveness of their function. One of the challenges to community police units is to maintain peace and. When Law is violated, crime has been committed. This study seeks to focus on the Law Enforcement Agency (Nigeria Police Force) in crime control and prevention. The law enforcement agency in the real sense of the term according to Iwarimie-Jaja (1991:74), refers to criminal justice agency (federal, state or local) which perform the principal functions of prevention, and the apprehension of alleged offenders. By enforcement of the law Nigeria Police Force reflect the ideological interest and priority desired by the controllers of the state as observable in intractable competitions.

Throughout the length and breadth of our nation Thompson (1986), posted that innocent citizens are gripped with the fear of armed men, hoodlums, and vagabonds who perpetrate their evil with reckless abandon.

Our society has ever since been witnessing an unprecedented upsurge of criminal activities ranging from conventional, victimless to white-collar crime, especially “pen-robbery” which is now almost institutionalized. Any nation plagued with this magnitude of social problem which people sign as they pass by make comments like it’s too bad, will no doubt look for solutions. It is on this basis that Nigeria Police Force has come to stay.

According to Ogunleye (1976:250, duties of the police are defined in section 4 of the Police Act as “the prevention and detection of crime, the apprehension of offenders, the preservation of law and order, the regrettable, it is only the latter that law easily punishes because of their vulnerability whereas the former is let go with impunity.

Up till now the public fails to acknowledge the fact that the role of the police in our society is the defence of the right and property of the bourgeois, consequently, the police has been singled out as escape goat for all the ill of the society. It is from the context of the corrupt society we all belong that allegation of inefficiency and corruption consequently levelled against the Nigeria Police be viewed.

1.2 Statement of the Problem

In Nigeria today, the problem of Insecurity has risen to its highest level, corruption, crime, communal disturbances as in the case of the recent Communal Killings of Farmers by the Fulani Herdsmen, religious intolerance and the likes in Nigeria is a cause for serious concern. What nation loses as a result of violation of criminal law cannot be quantified. Not only is the economy dragged to the base continually, the image of the nation will need a great quantity of detergent to be laundered both home and abroad.

Therefore, the important questions are: How do we rid crime out of our society? Could it be controlled or prevented? What are its remote causes? The police have made series of efforts aimed at controlling and preventing crime yet not much has been achieved.

Many people have lost their lives, property, money and even intangible things such as reputation, joy, peace due to crime they committed or those of others. Could the inability of the police to achieve a crime free society be attributed to the socio-economic structure of our society, absence of sophisticated equipments to combat crime, poor communication network, outright bribery/corrupt practices among the police? Hence, these questions put low the integrity of the police and places one in a valley of indecision as to whether the Nigeria Police Force has the interest of the nation at heart.

The problems of Surulere Nigerian police in exercising its duties are both logistical and moral. Over the years in logistical terms, the force has maintained by the federal government has not had enough equipment. The quantity and quality of weapons, arms and ammunition available in most mobile squadron units in the country are hardly enough. There are some instances where the force cannot stand the counter firepower of armed bandits. In terms of human resources and strength, the Surulere Nigerian police is yet to have the strength that can adequately contain crime in country. Recruitment into the force has been epileptic. Losses of personnel through natural death, active service, retirement and disciplinary action have not been adequate replacement over the years. With regard to the standard laid by the United Nations ratio of one policeman to 400 citizens. Nigeria has not met the standard. The strength of the force, by the time the then Inspector General of Police Mr Musliu Smith assumed duty was under 120,000 (Nigeria Tribute 10th August, 2000). Okunola (1995) estimated the ratio of the police man to about 641 Nigerians. Which is not much improvement on ratio 1:980 as at 1979 (Danmadani, 1979).

The reward and pay structure of the force is also not encouraging compared to what it takes for one to lay down his/her life, the security is not available. The benefits are not attractive as revealed by Mr. Iwendi Haz, police public relation officer.

All these among others constitute the major problems of the study. The Criteria for Measuring Successful Policing (According To NOPRIN, 2004). These criteria are as follows:

  • Effectiveness (e.g. fewer or reduced criminal victimization; higher proportion of crimes known to the police cleared by arrest; increased recovery of stolen property; higher rates of arrests which result in conviction; lower traffic accident rates; faster response time to reports/complaints).
  • Responsiveness (e.g. higher citizen perception of safety from crime; higher citizen ratings of police performance in general; higher citizen ratings of specific police activities; higher citizen ratings of specific aspects of police conduct such as honesty, integrity, courtesy and fairness).
  • Equity (i.e. with reference to egalitarian distribution of “protection” to all sections of the population).
  • Efficiency (i.e. with reference to cost-and-benefit analysis of “protection” output relative to monetary, human and material in-put). However, when the above are translated into their ordinary meaning, the value and worth of a police force can be determined by:
  • The amount and quality of protection it offers the citizens as a whole; and
  • The degree of confidence and cooperation it enjoys from the average citizen.

Effective and efficient policing in Nigeria: Inadequacies, problems & obstacles Judged by the yardsticks outlined, it has long been clear to a majority of Nigerians that the Nigeria Police Force falls short of optimum performance. There is abundant official and research confirmation of this assertion, apart from information in the daily newspapers, and there is no need to “prove” the non-optimum performance of the Nigeria Police Force in the present contribution. Rather, what is needed is the identification of the major inadequacies, problems and obstacles that are responsible for the situation. And these may be grouped into three categories: material inadequacies; human problems; and obstacles external to the Force.

1.3 Objectives of the Study

This study is aimed specially at: identifying the strategies Nigeria Police Force uses in controlling and preventing crimes. The study will investigate to identify problems the police encounter in combating crime. The study is very important, predicted upon its emphasis on an understanding of the structure of our society and criminal activities.

Hence, it will serve as a guide for eliciting change in social police and practise, which is a desideration. Hopefully therefore, the various aims of government, general public and the police in particular will find the study useful. Other scholars will equally benefit from the study as it adds to existing literature of knowledge, advance measure in crime control and prevention to the betterment of our society. In Clear terms, It is the objective of the study to examine the following:

  1. The role of The Law Enforcement Agency (in this case the Police) in crime control and prevention within the context of historical materialism.
  2. The impact of the historical circumstances of the country on crime causation, prevention and control.
  3. The possibility of our attainment of a crime free society.
  4. Establish position relationship between the law enforcement agencies.
  5. Establish whether a significant relationship exist between the structure of Nigeria Police Force and criminal activities.
  6. The possibility of cordial relationship between the police and the general public.

1.4 Research Questions

  1. Is there any connection(s) between police inefficiency and insecurity in Nigeria.
  2. Are there factors that contribute to insecurity in Nigeria?
  3. What are the causes of challenges facing Nigeria police ability to curb insecurity?

1.5 Significance of the Study

The study has both theoretical and practical significance. Theoretically, community policing has not received adequate research in Africa and especially in Nigeria compared to the extensive researches that have been carried out in the United States and United Kingdom. For this study will be theoretically significant because its findings will help to close the gap created by lack of existing literatures on community policing as a strategy for crime reduction in Nigeria. It will be an addition to the body of existing sociological, criminological and criminal justice literatures particularly in the area of crime reduction strategies. It will also stimulate further research on community policing in this part of sub-Sahara Africa, and Nigeria in particular.

Practically, the study will also draw the attention of the police on the need to strengthen their relationship with the members of the community where they are working, for effective crime reduction. The findings of this study will help Enugu North in particular and Nigeria Government at large to plan on how to improve community policing.

The findings will also help the general public to understand how the community policing enhances or lowers effective crime control when properly applied.

Finally, the outcome of the study will no doubt help in the prevention of crime and social disorder, and be a useful material to research students of criminology, law, law enforcement agents and public administrators for a crime free society.

Chapter Five

Conclusions and Recommendations

5.1 Conclusion

The study examines the Nigeria police and the myriad of challenges of security in the country focusing on some local government areas in Lagos state. It identifies some of the challenges of the police which hinder their effective and efficient performance and sources of insecurity manifestation in Nigeria. Furthermore the study explains that security has gone beyond the protection of lives and property and entire law and order through political sovereignty and monopoly of violence which state provide as posited by Thomas Hobbes in 1962 but with the collaboration of all and sundries within all-encompassing condition in which individual citizen live in freedom, peace and safety, participate fully in the process of governance. Enjoy the protection of fundamental right, have access to their health and will being (South Africa white paper on Defence, 1996). The quality of training and welfare, logistics and some other materials given to police personnel has significant impact on their performance. Even with that the study believes that if the little resource at the disposal of the police is judiciously put to proper use the rate of crime in the society will be as high as we have it.

5.2 Recommendations

The study recommends the following: The police should at least make judicious use of the available resources given their to create a secure environment. The government and the police authorities should provide adequate logistics means that will contribute to the effective and efficiency delivery of the Police Service. Yet, the government should make priority to meaningfully engage the youth in the county thereby reducing the rate of unemployment
There should be religious tolerance among the people. Police should be funded adequately and remunerated well as this will encourage their performance on the job. Also, our border should be manned thoroughly by the necessary security so that the influx of weapons into the country will be checked. Government should create and implement policies that will reduce the rate of poverty among its people. Finally, government should endeavour to provide a stable political environment in the country that will not encourage insecurity or that the youth and the poor will not be used to fuel insecurity in the land.

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