Despite promises of security, 703 persons abducted in 8 days under Tinubu

WHEN Bola Ahmed Tinubu was inaugurated as President on May 29, 2023, he promised to tackle the insecurity that has held the country captive head-on.

Tinubu, while he delivered his inaugural speech amidst cheers from his supporters, stated that security is a great concern to many Nigerians and pledged to prioritise security and effectively tackle the menace of insecurity.

“Security shall be the top priority of our administration because neither prosperity nor justice can prevail amidst insecurity and violence.

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“To effectively tackle this menace, we shall reform both our security Doctrine and its Architecture.

“We shall invest more in our security personnel, and this means more than an increase in number. We shall provide better training, equipment, pay and firepower,” he stated.

But despite his many promises, about 703 people were abducted between March 3 and March 10 2024. This is in addition to many other kidnappings and killings under this administration.

703 persons kidnapped in 8 days

On Sunday, March 3, 2024, some women were abducted by terrorists on their way to the bush to get firewood in Borno state.

They were reportedly besieged by gunmen in the Bula Kunte Bush in Ngala Town’s western section, where the bandits freed older people amongst them and abducted some young boys and girls.

Speaking to The ICIR in a telephone chat on Wednesday, March 6, the spokesperson of the Borno police command, Nahum Daso Kenneth, said the incident happened. However, he still needs to get the details of the occurrence.

But according to Amnesty  International (AI), more than 400 displaced people in Borno state were abducted.

The organisation said on March 3 2024, suspected Boko Haram fighters abducted at least 400 Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) – most of them women and children – from Babban Sansani, Zulum and Arabic IDP camps in Gamboru Ngala, Borno state. 

Also on Thursday, March 7, a school teacher, Sani Abdullahi, said at least 287 students and a principal, Abubakar Isah, were abducted when bandits invaded the Local Education Authority (LEA) Primary and Junior Secondary School, Kuriga, in Chikun Local Government Area of Kaduna State.


Abdullahi revealed this during the visitation of Governor Uba Sani and some other state government officials to the school hours after the incident, noting that 187 students were abducted from the secondary school section and 125 from the primary school section, totalling 312 students.

The ICIR reported how the assailants invaded the school and reportedly kidnapped over 100 children, alongside some staff of the school.

The Police in Sokoto confirmed to The ICIR on March 10 that bandits abducted 15 students and a woman.

According to the police, the 15 Tsangaya students were taken from the Gidan Bakuso area of Gada Local Government Area in Sokoto State.

Reports indicate that the event happened on the school grounds on Saturday, March 9.

The Sokoto state police command spokesperson, Ahmad Rufai, said 15 students were abducted within the school. At the same time, a woman was kidnapped outside the school.

Expert view

Commenting on the spate of abductions in the country, a security expert, Oladele Fajana, told The ICIR that he is disappointed in the approach of the government and security agencies.

Fajana said it is regrettable that government and security agencies still allow “unfortunate incidents like this (Abductions) to keep happening again and again.”

“We are still making the same mistakes. I don’t believe any school in Kaduna will still be attacked successfully in this time and age.

“Our security forces are reactionary. We don’t have to wait until our schools are attacked before we react,” he stated.

On the way forward, Fajana said the security forces should continue to anticipate attacks.

“We must be alert 24 hours; we must not leave any chance. The government should know that when these kidnappers leave a particular spot, they will go elsewhere.”

He said the government should show more seriousness in tackling the issue of insecurity.

“What do they discuss in their security council meetings?” Fajana asked.

What Tinubu must do to tackle insecurity in 2024

Every part of Nigeria has grappled with insecurity and crime, but the North-East, North-West, North-Central and South-East regions have faced them more than the remaining two South-West and South-South in recent times.

In January 2024, the ICIR looked at what the government can do to tackle insecurity in 2024.

Managing director of Beacon Consulting Limited, Kabir Adamu, in a chat with The ICIR, listed things Tinubu’s administration could do to reduce crime and insecurity in the new year. 

According to Adamu, the government should focus on implementing its Renewed Hope Agenda.

He urged Tinubu to expand other policy documents for which the President had signed a performance bond with his minister. 

He added that the government must ensure that national security formations are more effective and efficient and avoid using ad-hoc means to address security challenges. 

In his opinion, the publicity director of Arewa Youths for Peace and Security, Dantata Mohammed, urged Tinubu to review the country’s security architecture by putting the right persons at the helm of affairs. 



    He also called for adequate incentives for all the security agencies.

    Mohammed urged the top echelon of the security agencies to purge itself of rotten eggs and put in place a monitoring mechanism for checking overbearing behaviours.

    Adamu, on his part, listed what security agencies should do differently in 2024 as follows:

    • Strengthen their monitoring and evaluation departments and ensure their key performance indicators are developed.
    • Align with the national security agenda and have international mechanisms for standards and measurements.
    • Strengthen their collaboration, coordination and cooperation and ensure they carry the people along. 

    He urged the Presidency to ensure that the platforms for performance measurement, intelligence fusion and grievance resolution are functional.

    A reporter with the ICIR
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