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Insecurity: 278 Soldiers, 122 Police Officers Among Over 9000 Nigerians Killed In Tinubu’s One Year In Office

With promises to address the welfare of frontline security agencies as contained in President Bola Tinubu’s manifesto, data has shown a worrisome situation of death among the nation’s security personnel with no fewer than 422 killed between June 2023 and April 2024.

Data by SBM Intelligence, a security and risk assessment think tank, analysed by THE WHISTLER revealed that of the total number of reported cases of security personnel’s death, over 276 were members of the armed forces and 122 were police personnel.

On Thursday, THE WHISTLER reported a dreaded attack on troops of the Nigerian Army in Borno State, where 30 were allegedly ambushed and killed.

However, further analysis of the data revealed that the Nigeria Security Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) also lost 12 personnel within the period under review.

Other security agencies that have suffered similar attacks on its personnel include the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) with no fewer than four operatives reported dead.

Others also include four personnel of the Nigeria Customs Services (NCS), two officers of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NSCDC) and one officer of the Correctional Service.

Speaking on the situation, particularly as it relates to the Nigeria Police, Retired Assistant Inspector-General of Police, Austine Iwar told THE WHISTLER that “there hasn’t been any clearly defined policy pronouncement on police welfare since this administration came to power.”

The former police boss noted that the government has rather focused its mind on unbundling the police and making it less effective in internal security issues through the creation of state police structures.

“Which is why the government never made major statements about the killings of police personnel. The Nigeria Police has the least welfare package amongst law enforcement agencies in Nigeria,” Iwar said.

The retired police officer recommended that the Federal Government create a constitutional structure, which is the police council, to cater to police.

The Council, Iwar had expected, should be responsible for the management, administration and supervision of the police, but “currently, the council has no office, no executive secretary to run its affairs. The Council only meets when it is to confirm the appointment of the IGP.”

Meanwhile, the death toll of security operatives in the last year is a fraction of the total fatalities recorded in the past year of the Tinubu-led administration.

Further analysis of the data revealed that between June 2023 and April 2024, no fewer than 9,060 Nigerians were killed. Security expert with SBM, Confidence MacHarry said.

A breakdown of the data revealed a wave in the number of fatalities within the period under review as April 2024 topped the table with the highest number of deaths in the first year of the current administration.

A month-to-month analysis by THE WHISTLER revealed in June 2023, 781 people were reportedly killed, but the cases of fatalities decreased to 709 in July 2024, showing a 9.21 per cent decrease.

By August, the fatalities rose by 14.66 per cent to 813 reported cases of death. By September, the country witnessed a downward slope of death cases as 518 people were reported to have died, showing a 36.28 per cent decrease.

But by October, there was a spike in the number of reported death cases — no fewer than 776 people had died, showing a 49.80 per cent increase.

In November, the number of deaths rose again to 885, with a percentage increase of 14.04.

By the end of 2023, the country witnessed a surge in the number of reported deaths — No fewer than 1,013 had died following cases of insecurity. This was a 14.46 per cent increase from November.

By the new year, in 2024 the country continued to witness reported cases of death. No fewer than 757 people had died, showing a 25.27 per cent decrease from what was recorded by the end of the previous year.

In February 2024, the nation recorded a slight increase in the number of death cases by 2.11 per cent, with a total of 773 people killed by assailants.

By March 2024, the number of deaths escalated to 907, showing a 17.33 per cent increase.

The following month, in April, the number rose by 24.36 per cent, taking the number of deaths to 1,128 — standing as the month with the highest number of death cases in the first year of Tinubu’s administration.

Security Expert, MacHarry noted that “It was not guaranteed from Tinubu that security situation was going to improve, given that his manifesto was not big on security”, adding that “The security arrangement that he inherited from the last administration has largely remained the same and that is what the country has been working under.”

However, MacHarry noted that the establishment of a Mine Marshal in Oyo to combat illegal mining and the ongoing conversation surrounding the state police implementation remains the only substantial achievement of the tinubu-led administration

Retired AIG Iwar, held a similar view, when he acknowledged the ongoing political drive for state police, but said, “Whether it comes to fruition, we wait to see.”

He further noted, “Tinubu took over an economy that was literally dead. He has been experimenting with various but unorthodox economic models. None seems to be working so far.

“He has spent billions on things I think the government should stop funding. E.g: Hajj. Why spend 90bn on Hajj and a few billions on student hotels? I don’t understand.

“The budget has seen billions of padding, evidence is about for this crime, yet nothing has been done to remove it.

“Whilst he is still crawling on the floor I hope soon he will stand up and see the truth. He can cut down the cost of governance,” he stated.

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