Investigation Of The Effect Of Corruption And Extortion In Conventional Police Stations On The Nigerian Citizens

Project and Seminar Material for Criminology And Security Studies

Investigation Of The Effect Of Corruption And Extortion In Conventional Police Stations On The Nigerian Citizens


Chapter One


Introduction

1.1 Background Of The Study

One of the challenges facing national development and economic growth in Nigeria is corruption. The former military regime of 1983-1998 justified their overthrow of the government on the basis of corruption. In addition, the former President, Olusegun Obasanjo, during his first term inauguration speech identified corruption as “the country’s biggest problem, that pervades all aspects of human life: from the home to both public and private institutions” (Igbuzor, 2008:21 and Adebayo 2005:94). The corruption has become a widespread phenomenon that has deeply permeated into the core of society and has almost become the normal way of life. Preye Inokoba and Weleayan Ibegu (2011:283) have observed that “corruption generally has eaten so deep into Nigeria‘s body politics that its practice is seen more like a societal norm than an exception.” People have internalized the belief that hard work, honesty and integrity, which contribute to the essence of human kind, are no longer worthy principles since one can do very little to get or earn so much. Corrupt practices in Nigeria include bribery, fraud, embezzlement, extortion, favoritism and nepotism (Aluko, 2009:5). These practices have affected national development, political stability and good governance resulting in severe hardships, a high rate of unemployment, the aggravation of poverty and inequality, and poor service delivery, for instance in the provision of electricity and water.

The Police is one of the most important institutions in the society. They are entrusted with the right to protect the citizen even when that involves the use of violence. More is expected of the Police than most modern professional jobs. They are expected to be brave and not show any human emotion like fear, shock, surprise, etc even in the face of serious tragedies like death, deformity, etc. Undoubtedly, peace, safety and security are both necessary and indispensable requirements for development and the attainment of good quality of life for any human society. They provide the requisite enabling environment for citizens to live and work towards social, economic and political development of the society (Groenewald & Peake, 2004). The significance of peace, safety and security to mankind cannot be over-emphasized as the socioeconomic and political development of any society depends on the security system available in such society. By the same token, their absence stifles the human capacity to develop and heavily compromises the development and quality of life of both individuals and society. Furthermore, insecurity impacts negatively on all citizens through losses of property, life and limb, or through loss of confidence from fear of violence. It is against this backdrop that the delivery of safety and security is considered a justifiable public good and the very essence of the state (Lubuva, 2004). Human safety and security are indeed human rights having a value of their own and serving an instrumental function in the construction of human contentment and prosperity (Odinkalu 2005)

The Nigerian Police Force (NPF), in spite of the major role they are required to play in protecting the public and in the maintenance of law and order, are often viewed by the public as a corrupt institution. This is because there are daily reports in the media of abuse by the police. The corrupt practices within the police department in Nigeria is so endemic that despite the numerous efforts made by the government in policy and regulatory control, corruption remains difficult to manage. The failure of the government strategies to reduce corruption makes the issue of police misconduct an ethical challenge. The researcher’s hypothesis in this study is that the various anti-corruption strategies have not touched the core of society, considering the extent of police corruption in recent times. The researcher argues that there is need for policy makers to extend the search for the solution to traditional culture to see if whether it offers certain values that can challenge corruption in the contemporary Nigerian Police Force. In other words, there is a need to explore other approaches that have the potential to contribute values that will be effective in reducing police corruption.


1.2 Statement Of Research Problem

The Nigerian Police Force (NPF), in spite of the major role they are required to play in protecting the public and in the maintenance of law and order, are often viewed by the public as a corrupt institution. This is because there are daily reports in the media of abuse by the police. The inherent corrupt tendency of its rank and file, Allegations are rife of police officers demanding bribes from offenders, allegations of the police demanding money from traffic offenders, etc. more so, denting the image of the force prevents it from efficiently performing its duties. The failure of Nigerians and the persistent reluctance of the public to report crimes no doubt contribute to the inefficiency of the force. Many people are afraid that an honest citizen who reports a crime, instead of being praised, is at times turned into a suspect. Because of the attendant repercussions regarding this, many citizens may watch a crime taking place and yet turn a blind eye to it. Another shortcoming of the force is lack of sophisticated equipment to fight crime. Police lack a workable and efficient communication network. The walkie-talkie, a pre-requisite for an efficient force, is lacking. A mobile system of transportation is also lacking. And some of the operational guns that the police carry are inadequate and clearly out-model or obsolete


1.3 Objectives Of The Study

The primary objective of this study is to:

  1. To investigate the effect of corruption in conventional police stations on Nigerian citizens
  2. To find out the causes of corruption In conventional police stations in Nigeria
  3. To find out how corruption and extortion can be reduced or eradicated in Nigeria.

1.4 Research Questions

  1. Does corruption in conventional police stations affect the Nigerian citizens?
  2. Does corruption have a cause?
  3. Does corruption in conventional police stations be eradicated or reduced?

1.5 Significance Of The Study

The significance of this study cannot be underestimated as:

  1. This study will lay emphasis to investigate the effect of corruption and extortion in conventional police stations on Nigerian citizens.
  2. The findings of this research work will undoubtedly provide the much needed information to government organizations, NPF, individuals, NGOS, and academia

1.6 Scope Of The Study

This study intends to investigate the effect of corruption, extortion in conventional police stations on Nigerian citizens .. Hence this study is delimited to police stations in Lagos state and as such, will be used as our case study


1.7 Limitations Of The Study

This study was constrained by a number of factors which are as follows:

Financial constraint is inevitable considering the present economic situations. Due to lack of finance at the researchers disposal to get materials and in printing of questionnaires. it was not possible to visit some of the police stations and some of the victims of corruption.

In developing countries like Nigeria, there is the problem of insufficient data.

Time factor: time factor pose another constraint since having to shuttle between writing of the research and also engaging in other academic work making it uneasy for the researcher


1.8 Operational Definition Of Terms

Investigation:

This is the action of investigating something or someone.

Corruption:

This is a dishonest or fraudulent conduct by those in power.

Conventional:

Based on, or in accordance with what is generally done or believed.

Police Station:

This is a building which serves to accommodate police officers and other members of staff.


Investigation Of The Effect Of Corruption And Extortion In Conventional Police Stations On The Nigerian Citizens


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Investigation Of The Effect Of Corruption And Extortion In Conventional Police Stations On The Nigerian Citizens


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