The police are the least effective of all security agencies detailed to curb the Boko Haram crisis in Maiduguri, a survey by CLEEN Foundation, a nongovernmental organization have revealed.
The survey which was conducted across the six geopolitical zones in Nigeria using telephone calls between August 10 and 16, this year showed that majority of the respondents believe the Nigeria Police Force were not effective in the dislodgment of the crisis.
“On the agencies that were least effective in responding to Boko Haram, majority of the respondents – 53 percent – pointed at the police followed by 20 percent who fingered all the agencies,” the report said.
However, more than half respondents support the deployment of soldiers to Maiduguri to help provide security following the Boko Haram insurgency.
According to the foundation, slightly more than one half of those interviewed – 54 percent – felt security agencies were handling the insurgency well. “26 percent were neutral, while one in five respondents said they were doing badly.”
“Incidentally, we were at the press conference in Abuja where the report was being released when the news about bombing of the UN House broke,” Gabriel Akinremi, an information officer at the foundation said.
When the data were reviewed by zones, less than half of the respondents in the Southwest, Northwest and South-south felt the agencies – including the army – were effective in Miaduguri.
Respondents in the southeast, northeast and north-central strongly agreed that the deployment of soldiers to quell the uprising was effective.
The CLEEN Foundation, formerly known as Centre for Law Enforcement Education, is nongovernmental organization established in January 1998 with the mission of promoting public safety, security and accessible justice through the strategies of empirical research, legislative advocacy, demonstration programmes and publications, in partnership with government and civil society
The Boko Haram sect, whose leader was gunned by the police in 1999, abhors westernization and is supposedly campaigning for the Islamization of Nigeria. It has claimed responsibility for numerous deadly attacks on police, community leaders, churches and prisons, and recently, the bombing of the United Nation’s office in Abuja.
Although the group presently has an undefined structure or chain of command, four in every five of the respondents in the survey claimed full awareness the sect’s activates.
Majority of the respondents – 58 percent, however, supports dialogue with the terrorist group. The federal government had in previous circumstance negotiated with armed groups leading to the ongoing amnesty program for militants in the south.
Ironically, respondents from the Southern zone do not support dialogue with the Boko Haram group. Only 35 percent of respondents in South east supported dialogue with Boko Haram whie 51 Percent in the South-South – base of the amnestied militants – supports government’s dialogue with Boko Haram.
“The highest level of support for dialogue with the terror group came from its native zone, the Northeast, where 4 out of every 5 respondents – 80 percent – voted for dialogue followed by Northwest with 62 percent,” the reports said.