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Banditry is fast becoming alarming in Nigeria’s Fourth Republic to the extent that it poses a serious security threat not only to the Northwest region but to Nigeria at large. The level at which bandits operate within the landscape of Nigeria’s northwest has led to spree of kidnapping, maiming of people, loss of lives, population displacements, loss of cattle, disruption of socio-economic activities in general, and equally brought about an atmosphere of uncertainty, a situation that has become worrisome to the government and the citizenry. This study was intended to examine the impact of Naira redesign in curbing banditry in Nigeria. This study was guided by some objectives. The study employed the descriptive and explanatory design; questionnaires in addition to library research were applied in order to collect data. Primary and secondary data sources were used and data was analyzed using the chi square statistical tool at 5% level of significance which was presented in frequency tables and percentage. The study findings revealed that there is a significant impact of Naira redesign in curbing banditry in Nigeria. 



1.1       Background of the Study

The pervasive banditry and its associated threats to security, which have enveloped the Northwest region of Nigeria, particularly, Zamfara, Katsina, Kaduna, Sokoto and Niger States, have become a worrisome national security issue of public concern (Olaniyan & Yahaya, 2016). Reports indicate the flourishing of bandit groups, whose members were seen displaying automatic weapons, terrorising herders’ settlements, farms, villages and the highways with the mission of killing people, kidnapping and pillaging cows (Olaniyan, 2018). It was reported that between October, 2013 and March, 2014, 7,000 cattle were rustled from commercial livestock farms and traditional herders in Northern Nigeria (Bashir, 2014; Tauna, 2016) while about 330 attacks were made by bandits and 1,460 deaths were recorded between January and July, 2019 (Abdullahi, 2019). In most cases, the bandits killed and maimed the people and raped the women before dispossessing them of their cows (Akowe & Kayode, 2014) while in some instances, they also kidnapped girls or women in the process (Adeniyi, 2015; Yusuf, 2015).

 Suffice to say that the northwestern region of Nigeria encompasses seven states namely Kano, Jigawa, Katsina, Kaduna, Zamfara, Sokoto and Kebbi. Five of these states, which are Katsina, Kaduna, Zamfara, Sokoto and Kebbi have been mostly affected by the scourge of banditry. Of these five states, Kaduna, Katsina and Zamfara have been the most critical hot spots. It is however, pertinent to note that the incidences of banditry are not limited to northwestern Nigeria. In fact, it is also prevalent in some parts of north-central region, in states like Niger, Nasarawa, Benue and Plateau which are equally regarded as hotbeds (Kuna & Jibrin 2016).

 Scholars like Gaye (2018), Olaniyan and Yahaya (2016), Suleiman (2017) and Mustapha (2019) have advanced several factors for the cause and prevalence of banditry in Nigeria. Some of the factors they argued include the fragility of Nigerian state, weak state institutions, especially the security agencies, availability of grossly ungoverned spaces, porosity of Nigeria’s borders with its neighbouring countries and arms proliferation, weak leadership, corruption, unemployment and mass poverty.

Furthermore, despite the federal framework adopted by Nigeria’s forefathers, Nigeria’s security architecture since the incursion of the military in Nigeria’s politics is contrived in such a manner that the control of every security outfit is placed in the hands of the President at the centre. Though the governor is recognised by Nigeria’s constitution as the Chief Security Officer of the state, in actual fact, he wields no power over the police that could be put to use in times of crisis. This precarious situation places every governor at the mercy of the President in the period of crisis at the state level denying him the opportunity to confront security challenges with expediency and expertise. This is one of the reasons why people are clamouring for restructuring that will, among others, effect the creation of state police to meet the immediate needs of every state.

1.2       Statement of the Problem

There is no gainsaying the fact that banditry poses a serious challenge not only to the security of Northwest states but to the country at large in view of its ever-increasing impacts and implications. The level at which armed bandits operate within the northwest region calls for attention by both the State and Federal governments, more especially, since the latter controls the state security apparatuses. This complex situation of social violence and insecurity in the affected states had been on for almost a decade now (Okoli & Ogayi, 2018). The increasing attacks of bandit groups have led to the destruction of lives and properties, displacement of people from their communities; and a growing numbers of widows; widowers and orphans, who now reside in Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camps following the continued attacks of armed bandits on both farming and pastoral communities across different areas of the states (Okoli & Ochim, 2016; Mustapha, 2019).

Though the police is traditionally responsible for the maintenance of peace, law and order within the nation, it appears that its personnel are being overstretched by the responsibility of securing the political process and political functionaries of the state apart from the fact that it is ill-equipped to meet the challenges of contemporary security needs. In addition, Nigeria is under-policed, its personnel is grossly inadequate, running short of the United Nations requirements or ratio of one police to four hundred citizens. Furthermore, the salary of the police personnel is poor; welfare services are nonexistent while there has been no incentive to boost their morale. The general social discontent and distrust among citizens have made the probable collaboration between the security men and the people fragile thus inhibiting the efficient and effective performance of security agencies in successfully confronting the bandit groups. This development has therefore, affected government efforts in achieving the desired goal of crushing banditry in the Northwest region. 

 Against the backdrop of the upsurge in incidences of banditry in recent times, this study examined the phenomenon of banditry as it affects the security of the northwest region of Nigeria in the fourth republic.

1.3       Objectives of the Study

The main objective of this study is to examine the impact of banditry on Nigeria’s security focusing on Naira redesign. Specific objectives include;

  1. To examined the impact of Naira redesign in curbing banditry in Nigeria.
  2. To determine the relationship between Naira design and banditry in Nigeria.
  3. To find out the effectiveness of Naira redesign in curbing banditry in Nigeria.

1.4       Research Questions

i. What is the impact of Naira redesign in curbing banditry in Nigeria?

ii. Is there a relationship between Naira design and banditry in Nigeria?

iii. Is Naira redesign effective in curbing banditry in Nigeria?

1.5       Research Hypotheses

Hypothesis I

H0: There is no significant impact of Naira redesign in curbing banditry in Nigeria.

Hi: There is a significant impact of Naira redesign in curbing banditry in Nigeria.

Hypothesis II

H0: There is no relationship between Naira design and banditry in Nigeria.

Hi: There is a relationship between Naira design and banditry in Nigeria.

Hypothesis III

H0: Naira redesign is not effective in curbing banditry in Nigeria.

Hi: Naira redesign is effective in curbing banditry in Nigeria.

1.6       Significance of the Study

This study will be of immense benefit to other researchers who intend to know more on this study and can also be used by non-researchers to build more on their research work. This study contributes to knowledge and could serve as a guide for other study.

1.7       Scope of the Study

This study is on the impact of naira redesign in curbing banditry in Nigeria.

1.8       Limitations of the study

The demanding schedule of respondents at work made it very difficult getting the respondents to participate in the survey. As a result, retrieving copies of questionnaire in timely fashion was very challenging. Also, the researcher is a student and therefore has limited time as well as resources in covering extensive literature available in conducting this research. Information provided by the researcher may not hold true for all businesses or organizations but is restricted to the selected organization used as a study in this research especially in the locality where this study is being conducted. Finally, the researcher is restricted only to the evidence provided by the participants in the research and therefore cannot determine the reliability and accuracy of the information provided. Other limitations include;

Financial constraint: Insufficient fund tends to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire and interview).

Time constraint: The researcher will simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. This consequently will cut down on the time devoted for the research work.

1.8       Definition of Terms

Currency redesign: Redesigning currencies is an activity for sovereign nations. It allows the currency-issuing country to improve the currency’s security to deter counterfeitingBanditry: Banditry is a type of organized crime committed by outlaws typically involving the threat or use of violence.