Incessant Kidnapping And Its Effect On Nigerian Citizens (A Case Study Of Niger State)
1.1 Background Of The Study
Kidnapping has been a common occurrence in Nigerian society. It’s quickly becoming a more profitable alternative to armed robbery. Kidnapping is such a serious crime that it has influenced almost everyone in our country. The current dimension of kidnapping became alarming in the Niger Delta region when militants abducted some oil workers in February 2006, ostensibly to attract international attention to the desperate situation in the country’s oil-rich Niger Delta region; the victims were mostly foreigners. Since then, the social problem of kidnapping has spread across the country like wildfire, especially in the south-eastern region. Foreigners are no longer the only ones who are targeted; virtually every Nigerian is now a target. However, it is now clear that the former Governor of Anambra State was abducted on July 10, 2003 by members of his own political party who were opposed to him (Emewu & Anyanwu, 2009). Kidnapping is, therefore, arguably not new in the area.However, the latest lucrative ransom-demanding technique has become a major social problem for the Nigerian government and citizens. For example, in 2008, an online tourism site ranked Nigeria sixth on the global kidnap index. Nigeria is ranked behind the Philippines, Venezuela, Columbia, Brazil, and Mexico as a country with significant kidnapping issues (Ujumadu, 2008; Ekpe, 2009). Owing to a lack of reliable statistical data, such a study may be used as an assumption. According to Ekpe (2009), Nigeria reported 512 cases of kidnapping in 2009, with 30 people found dead in kidnappers’ dens, compared to 353 cases in 2008. Similarly, Kyrian 2009 estimated that between 2006 and 2009, Nigeria’s former Inspector General of Police noted that kidnappers and hostage takers received $15 million in ransom (roughly $100 million). Kidnappings have been a regular occurrence in southern Nigeria. Persons’ and their property protection in Nigeria cannot be assured. Kidnapping is a crime in Nigeria that is punishable by statute. Anyone found in the act is likely to face a sentence of ten years in jail. Apart from the above observation, some states such as Abia, Akwa Ibom, Anambra, Enugu, Imo, Ebonyi, and Rivers have enacted a bill titled “Prohibition of Hostage Taking and Related Offenses Rule,” which punishes criminals with the death penalty (Inyang, 2009; Ekpe, 2009). Meanwhile, bills calling for the death penalty for abduction are pending further consideration by the National Assembly. Despite these strict rules, no recorded case of kidnapping has been successfully prosecuted to act as a deterrent to other would-be kidnappers. Nigerians and non-Nigerians living in the country are terrified of being the next victim, because kidnappers spare no one as long as their goals are met. Kidnappers have targeted the rich and high-earners in recent years, and they only release their victims after a ransom is paid. People in their eighties and nineties, as well as children aged two to five, have been kidnapped. The kidnapping incident has harmed Nigeria’s international profile. It has also hampered Nigeria’s efforts to establish a viable tourism industry, as tourists are constantly cautioned not to visit Nigeria by their governments. For fear of being abducted, many would-be investors have stayed away (Ekpe, 2009). Apart from the observable facts presented above, several more issues related to the problem of kidnapping will be revealed during the course of this investigation. This research will also look into the origins and spread of kidnapping in Nigeria. This is important because, despite efforts to reduce it, kidnapping continues to be a problem, and it has been on the rise in recent years.
1.2 Statement Of The Problem
From an economic standpoint, kidnapping has both direct and indirect consequences. Individually, it causes damage, including the loss of significant financial capital as ransom. And, from an indirect standpoint, the proactive and costly approach to recruiting private security consultants, as well as the resulting increase in budget spending. For example, the federal government’s national security budget for 2019 is N109.8 billion, which covers security and its agencies’ costs. The Lagos state government revealed that it spent over three billion Naira on ransom, and Sir Mike Okiro, a former Inspector General of Police, revealed that the amount of ransom paid between 2006 and 2009 totaled over 15 billion Naira, which could have been put to better use (Kyrian, 2009). According to Dode (2012), when six foreigners were kidnapped on the premises of Shell Petroleum Corporation in 2006, the firm was forced to evacuate its workers, crippling its output and causing Nigeria’s economic decline and deterring foreign investment.
Residents confirmed a spate of kidnappings in the region, prompting hundreds of protesters to partially block a highway leading into Nigeria’s capital, Abuja, on Monday May 25, 2021. A crowd barricaded a portion of the Abuja-Kaduna highway in the Tafa region of Niger state, which borders the federal capital, by setting tyres on fire, according to an AFP journalist on the scene. Kidnappings have been a problem in Africa’s most populous country for years, with criminals mostly targeting the wealthy and powerful. However, in recent years, the pool of victims has grown, and the needy and poor from all over the world are now being held for ransom. Last week, 12 people were kidnapped in nearby Madalla town and two others in Bwari, according to local media. “We’re in the midst of a major upheaval… We don’t sleep here, or anywhere else for that matter… If there isn’t enough support, the issue will get even worse “Another protester expressed his opinion. “We’re in danger here… Please,” According to a lady, her sister lives in the neighborhood with her four children.
1.3 Objective Of The Study
- To assess the level of damage kidnapping has done to the travelling traders in Niger state.
- To assess if companies are willing to settle in Niger state.
- To assess if the kidnaps are perpetrated by natives of the land.
1.4 Research Questions
- What level of damage has kidnapping done to travelling traders in Niger state?
- Are companies willing to settle in Niger state despite the insecurity?
- Who are the perpetrators of kidnap in Niger state?
1.5 Significance Of The Study
This report would affect companies because it includes preventative measures against kidnappings and would assist the government in identifying the kidnap suspect. The research will also be beneficial to students and other academics who wish to conduct research on the same report subject.
1.6 Scope Of The Study
This research study concentrates solely on incessant kidnapping and its effect on Nigerian citizens, The thesis was carried out in high schools in Suleja, Niger state.
1.7 Limitation Of Study
The study was limited due to time constrains and lack of research materials.
1.8 Definition Of Terms
The action of abducting someone and holding them captive.
A person who lives in a city or town and is entitled to the rights and privileges of a freeman.
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