A Historical Perspective of Nigeria’s Internal Security Since 1999
Security is an important requirement in the sustenance of every modern state in the international political system. This is based on the need for states recognised as independent to maintain their territorial integrity without the control of their territories by other states. The maintenance of internal security has remained a primary duty of the state, and this endeavour in the history of Nigeria dates back to the colonial period when the colonial masters mobilised all the machinery of cohesion (police and army) in their bid to suppress the indigenous people into total submission to the colonial administration. The chapter examines the challenges and issues associated with the maintenance of internal security, with emphasis on the eras and threats to national security in the country. Recent events have shown that the increase in criminal activities, social insecurity and poor performance of security agencies aggravated the insecurity across the country. For instance, inadequacy of security personnel, particularly the police, is the bane of law enforcement, as most areas are not well policed. Poor policing explains why military option became a strategy adopted by government to maintain order in the state. This phenomenon contributed to the establishment of ethnic militias. It also led to the formation of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps in order to fill the security lapses across the country. The chapter concludes by suggesting some ways of sustaining the success of security agencies in securing the entire country from various threats to national security.
KeywordsNational security Security agencies Police and security threats
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