Interrogating Government's Multi-Level Approaches to Ending Armed Banditry in the Northwest Region of Nigeria

Kolade, Gabriel Olubiyo ; Mohammed, Nasiru Ibrahim (2022)


The phenomenon of armed banditry has been a general trend mostly in Northern Nigeria and one of the greatest security threats to the existence of human life in the country. Despite the efforts of both the federal and state governments to put an end to the menace, it has continued to escalate on a large scale. The federal government’s strategy has been in the form of joint military-police internal security operations aimed at decimating the bandits, whereas, the North western states’ government, to a large extent, preferred negotiation with the armed groups. These two approaches appeared contradictory in the anti-banditry operations of the government; hence winning the war has been a hard nut to crack. There is copious literature on armed banditry in the North western region of Nigeria which provides understanding to the rise, growth, activities and the menace of the armed gangs but there is little or no study on the approaches of government in tackling armed banditry. It is against this background that this paper seeks to interrogate the multi-level approaches to ending armed banditry ravaging the northwest region of Nigerian with a view to providing in-depth understanding to the lacuna in the approaches in the fight against the armed groups. The paper adopted analytical and interdisciplinary methodology using secondary sources. The paper argued that the approaches to end banditry in the region are not only contradictory but have further revealed lapses, huge monumental failure and incapacity to secure life and property. The paper concluded that both the federal and state governments must adopt the same methodology for peace building in the country.