Police is the agency of a community or government that is responsible for maintaining public order, preventing and detecting crime. The basic police mission of preserving order by enforcing rules of conduct or laws- was the same in ancient societies as it is in sophisticated urban environments. The conception of police as a protective andlaw enforcementorganization developed from the use of military bodies as guardians of peace such as Praetorian Guard of ancient Rome. During the middle ages, policing authority, particularly in England, was the responsibility of local nobles on their individual estates. Each noble generally appointed an official, known as a constable, to carry out the law. Their duties include keeping the peace, arresting and guarding criminals.
Police origin is product of social crisis in the society. In Nigeria the development of the police force was a tangential direction to that of British Force. British trade interest and the need to prevent squabbles between the native chiefs and the imperial merchants were the impetus for the formation of the force. Consequently, the police grew up as a paramilitary force bearing arms from its inception. The Consular Guards established in Lagos consisting of about 30 men were armed. In 1863, these Guards matured into the Hausa Police and by 1876, the latter developed into Hausa constabulary. It was armed and consisted of a Commissioner, two Assistant Commissioners, A Superintendent, an Assistant Superintendent, a Pay and Quartermaster, A Master Tailor and 250 other ranks. S. G. Ehindero (1998).
The Nigerian police began with thirty member consular guard formed in Lagos Colony in 1961. In 1876 a 1,200-member armed paramilitary Hausa constabulary was formed. In 1896 the Lagos Police was established. A similar force Niger Coast constabulary was formed in Calabar 1894 under the newly proclaimed Niger Coast Protectorate. In the north the Royal Niger company set up the royal Niger company constabulary in 1888 with headquarters at Lokoja. When the Nortern and Southern Nigeria were proclaimed in the early 1990s, part of the Royal Niger Company Constabulary became the Northern
Nigeria Police, and part of the Niger Coast Constabulary became the Southern Nigerian Police. Northern and Southern Nigeria were amalgamated in 1914, but their police forces were not merged until 1930, forming the Nigerian Police Force, headquarters in Lagos. The Nigerian Police Force performed conventional functions and was responsible for internal security generally; for supporting the prison, immigration, and customs services; and for performing military duties within or outside Nigeria as directed. The Nigerian Police is designated by section 164 of 1979 constitution as the national police of Nigeria with exclusive jurisdiction throughout the country. The Nigerian Police Force maintains three-tire administrative structures of departments, zonal, and state commands. Three major Governmental Agencies oversee the control and supervision of the Police; The Nigerian Police Council, the Police Service Commission and The ministry of Police Affairs.
The Nigerian Police Force operating budget 1984 to 1988 remained in the N380 million range, and in 1988 increased to N521 million. More notable were largecapital expenditureinfusions of N206 million in 1986 and N260.3 million in 1988, representing 3.5 and 2.5 percent of total federal capital expenditure in those years. These increase were used to acquire new communications equipment, transport, and weapons to combat the rising crime wave. Nigerian Police Force study in 1990 concluded that the force’s budget must double to meet its need.
Security, major preoccupation of the police, is the state or feeling of being safe and protected. Hence security becomes very important in any social setting. Yet, it is a fact that maintaining order becomes essential and challenging in democratic states. Since the return of democracy in 1999, the security situation in Nigeria has been quit disturbing, and in the past fifteen years things have been worsening on daily basis. Like any other human society, conventional crimes have been part of the experience. Being the specialized force responsible for maintaining order and ensuring security, the police play a major role as they keep watch of what goes on within the country.
Election, an activity that witness some level of insecurity, is a procedure that allows members of an organization or community to choose representatives who will hold positions of authority within it. The most important elections select the leaders of local, state, and national governments. The chance to decide who will govern at these levels serves as an opportunity for the public to make choices about policies, programs and feature direction of government action. The threat of defeat at the polls often exert pressure on those in power to conduct themselves in a responsible manner and take account of popular interest and wishes when they make their decisions. Elections are very important and serious events in a democratic state, where people get to choose their political leaders. But in a diverse country like Nigeria with different tribes and other pluralities, it becomes challenging to freely produce holders of various political offices. Since the return to civilian rule in 1999 until 2015 the country has been ruled by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), which rule had generated mixed feelings. For several years under the PDP watch, and the country has faced ineffective and inefficient administration, with security becoming the most disturbing issue especially in the northern part of the country. Indeed, the challenges of security had led to the postponement of the election that was supposed to take place on the 14th of February 2015 to 28th of March 2015, a decision that angered the people. Election over time has generated the fear of election manipulation by the ruling party, as rigging is a significant element of election in Nigeria.
Statement of the problem
The Nigerian Police Force experienced endemic problems recruiting training, inefficiency, indiscipline and it lacked expertise in specialized fields. Corruption and dishonesty were widespread, engendering a low level of public confidence, failure to report crimes, prevent and detect crime, investigation and tendencies to resort to selfhelp.
The Nigerian Police Force today is far different from the past Police Force that was known some decades ago. The past Nigerian Police Force has the history of nobility, service to humanity and sacrifice. It is saddening that in recent years, the Nigerian Police Force has become bastion of inefficiency, illegality and institutional decadence. It has moved from being one of the pillars of grace and service to a cathedral debauchery. For more than a century now the police corruption has touched more facets of our daily lives, as there are more deficit and structural ethics in Nigerian Police Force. The Police Force has been waging war against itself, and no police force can wage war against itself and expect to perform and disgorge its duties effectively and efficiently. When there is indictment in the law enforcement system and agencies, how can the illness of a country be healed, taken away and cured.
It is awful to know that no matter what the Nigerian Police Force does, the vast majority of Nigerian populace will always regard as members and groups that are corrupt. The populace will always refer them as people that loaf around most of the time and lazy people. Moreover, it is unfortunate that of all the arms of security services, the police have become the butt of vengeance. The armed hooligans i.e. armed robbers in Nigeria have better and great incentives than the police. Is there any wonder that armed robbers typically outman, outgun, and outgun the police if the general public does not respect for the police, how would the criminals desist from crime act The Police Force in
Nigeria are master minds of criminal act by colliding with criminals and serving as their godfathers. Some Nigerian police officials are also on the pay-roll of crime bosses, as they are being paid huge amounts of money, to protect their criminal acts.
The aforesaid are being caused by the superior officers in the police force, in terms of recruitment, training and proper control of the force. The recruitment processes are being used as family and political affaire, thereby neglecting the able ones and appointing those that are not capable and up-to standard.
The Nigerian political process has been very unstable since the country attained independence in 1960. Governmental instability is therefore a feature of Nigeria’s political life and election crises has become part of this instability. The problem of election crisis in Nigeria is therefore not a new one. It had started soon after independence and had occurred at different times and in varying degrees.
Indeed, election crises have been examined by scholars, with all conclusions either describing the problem as caused by ethnicity, modernization or class relation.
Elections in Nigeria result to a degree level of insecurity that makes it a police business. Insecurity persists during election in Nigeria which becomes a major concern to the police as to how to contain the problem.
Violence and demonstration is a relatively expected phenomenon during election. Violence comes about when election result is displeasing to the citizens, whereupon frustrated citizens wreck havoc on government properties and injure other innocent citizens as a way to express their anger. Demonstration to express satisfaction of electoral result, may also take place but can also result to violence when interrupted by intruders. Also connivance with the electoral officials to manipulate result to their advantage, which when noticed by opposition will result to violence. Franchise was limited to those who had permanent voters card (P.V.C) which not all registered voters were issued, Some registered voters insisted that they should be allowed to cast their vote without the P.V.C, which when not allowed to do so raised alarm in violent form.
These violent behaviors can only be contained by the police.
• What is the relevance of security for peaceful election?
• What are the causes of insecurity during the preparation for the 2015 election?
• What role do the Nigerian police play in ensuring security during the 2015 election?
• What are the factors limiting the performance of the Nigerian police in ensuring security during the 2015 election?
• What can be done to enhance security at the time of the election?
1.4 Aim and objectives
This research will be carried out with the aim to explicate on the Nigerian Police and the challenges they meet during election in Nigeria 2015 election to be precise.
• To show the relevance of security for peaceful election.
• To examine the causes of insecurity during the 2015 election.
• To investigate the role of police in ensuring security during the 2015 election.
• To examine the limitations of the police in ensuring security during the 2015 election.
• To suggest ways of maintaining security during the 2015 election.
1. Insecurity at the time of the 2015 election is due to negligence from the police.
2. There are no reasons that limit the police from ensuring security during the 2015 election.
Significance of the study
One of the basic pre-occupations of every individual, community or nation is the concern for security. This is because security affects not only human aspirations but also the fundamental issue of national survival (Robert McNamara, 1968). Security concerns, was believed to be one of the major factors that forced human beings into leaving the Hobbessian state of nature to live in association with each other. Thomas Hobbes posited that the earliest primitive society was characterized by unregulated freedom that made life “solitary, nasty, wicked, brutish and short” (Lyons, 2009). Security has to do with the fight for survival by individuals in a society, these includes all form of security (social, economical, environmental, food, technology etc). In the same light, Sola focusing analysis on developing countries opines that:
Security is more than military security from external attacks. For many of 4 billion inhabitants in the developing countries, security is conceived as the basic level of the struggle for survival. Therefore, in order to provide an integrated African security assessment, the non-military dimensions of security as a concept should be applied in its broadest sense to include economic security, social security, environmental security, food security, the quality of life security and technological security(cited in NISER, 2005).
In Africa, one of the major challenges that have confronted the states since their attainment of independence, is the problem of adequate institutional capacity to manage the numerous socio-economic, political and security issues that pervade the society. Essentially the mechanisms for managing internal security which involves policing are severely faulty. While African states have tried to develop capacity in several areas of their socio-economic and political life, it has become apparent that there is still a great gap between the complex nature of internal security challenges and the institutional frameworks and capacity for managing them.
Nigeria is a country with a total land area of 356667 square miles and an estimated population of 167 million people, with this large territory a protective force is needed, this however laid ground for the establishment and the creation of the Nigerian Police Force (Garba, 1998). Police are the most visible governmental agents through which the character of a government and political system may be assessed. This is so because the police are the guardian or vanguard of the status quo. An adequate analysis of the problems and challenges of any police force should start with the appreciation of the history and dynamics of its development. History of the police forces in the country indicates that the various forces were established, organized and maintained by colonial and post-colonial governments primarily for order maintenance that engenders repression, a culture of impunity: corruption, incivility, brutality, lack of transparency and accountability (NISER, 2005).
The Nigerian Police Force is a security outfit for the Nigerian state, established to combat crime and ensure security of lives and property of the citizenry. Experience over the years has shown the force has lived below expectation. Some of the reasons explaining this failure include corruption, delayed justice, impartiality among others. This has made the people to see the police as an enemy rather than a friend. That is, if crime is to be combated to guarantee security of the citizens, government should restructure the force to install into it more positive values that could ensure more effective service delivery to the masses.
Security is very important in any social setting it is so in relation to election. The state of security during election is a matter of concern since the return of civil rule in 1999. So many innocent lives have been lost all in the name of election. This study will try to understand the level of insecurity during the 2015 election and how it has been a challenge to the police.
This research will adopt both qualitative and quantitative method. It will use secondary and primary sources.
Primary data will be derived from questionnaires and interview. The questionnaires will be administered to the police in the department of the study
Secondary sources will involve the use of literature such as textbooks, journals, articles and the worldwide web.
The sample to be used will be purposive sample technique. This type of sample is one that is selected based on the knowledge of a population and purpose of study. The purposive sample targets those who fit a particular purpose or description. The number of sample for this research will be 20 police of the Nigerian Police Divisional
Headquarters Kabala Doki Kaduna.
• Accessing the police department as everyone is not trusted especially females.
• Being able to go out to acquire data during the election will likely be dangerous, if the election doesn’t go as the will of the people.
• Disclosure of information is very low for security reasons.
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