THE EFFICACY OF COMMUNITY POLICING IN NIGERIA

Leonard U. Ngwu, Chukwuma Clement Ahuruonye

Abstract


The study focused on the concept of community policing and its effectiveness in “order maintenance, crime prevention and fear reduction in the community as opposed to the traditional focus on prosecution of serious street crimes based on ‘jungle justice’. The study highlighted the performances of both the formal security agent (the police) and the informal security agents (the Neighbourhood watch/vigilante groups). This paper, therefore, reviewed the activities of each of the security agents, using the synergy of communitarian theory of community policing and the democratic theory of community policing as the theoretical base. The paper mainly utilized secondary source of data from the existing literature, including books and journal articles as well as the Focus Group Discussion (FGD). The paper revealed that police corruption, brutality, insensitivity, high-handedness, extortionist tendencies, rudeness, ignorance among others, and on the part of the informal groups deviating from their original duty schedule by taking unilateral actions, such as, meddling with husband/wife issues, aligning with politicians to unleash terror on their political, business or other opposers in the community, debt collectors, et cetera. The former (police attitude) resulted in lack of co-operation with the police and the public in giving the police information on crime situation in their respective communities. Despite these limitations, community policing is imperative in maintaining safety and crime-free society in Nigeria. In this regard, the paper advocates for the establishment of informal cum formal security apparatus in all streets, communities and towns (where possible) as the safest method of crime prevention, fear reduction, greater satisfaction and involvement by the citizens, cordial community- police relations, social cohesion, flow of information from citizens and enhanced quality of community life.

Keywords


The Efficacy, Community Policing in Nigeria

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