Army-KAI Clash

12th August- Armed soldiers on Thursday morning clashed with some Kick Against Indiscipline (KAI) personnel at Oju-Elegba bus-stop in Lagos. An eyewitness told The Nation that the conflict was caused by a KAI official who slapped and tore a man’s cloths for moving beside their parked van. It was later discovered that the assaulted man is a soldier who merely dressed in ‘mufti’. The soldier quickly contacted the nearest barracks and a clash ensued. The KAI officers quickly fled from the scene, throwing away their uniforms and caps in the process. The angry soldiers broke the KAI vehicle windscreen and deflated its tyres. Policemen later arrived the scene and restore peace and order. – The Nation

Analyst Comments: The KAI / Army clash continues to highlight the ongoing lack of respect the military have for the rights of Nigerians which in turn prevents civilian cooperation that is needed to gather information and effectively tackle crime across the country. Secondly, it puts a spotlight on the lack of cooperation between the various law enforcement agencies operating across the country. This also contributes to insecurity in Nigeria.

 

Kidnap and New Weapons Trafficking Tactic in Nigeria

18th August- The Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Fatai Owoseni, has raised the alarm of the new method adopted by criminals to traffic arms and ammunition. He said: “Some criminals had been arrested in motor parks with guns stocked in their bags, while trying to escape and smuggle their weapons out of the state.” Owoseni also advised parents, who always allow their children walk alone to school, to desist from it henceforth. According to him, the action of the parents gives kidnappers the opportunity to operate by luring the innocent children with biscuits.

18th August- Also, earlier this week, two children six-year-old Jumia and Ayomide (four) were abducted on Tuesday on Olorunfemi Street, in the Igando area of the state. They were reportedly returning from a summer school when the incident happened. This incident points to the second issue raised by the CP. A local barber has been arrested as a prime suspect in the case as it is alleged he lured the kids off under the guise of buying them biscuits.

Analyst Comments: Kidnapping persists across Nigeria for both ransom or ritual reasons. Extra caution while out and about is highly recommended.

Both comments made by the Lagos state CP are part of ongoing trends that have been observed in the state within the last two weeks. Last week, ECOWAS charged Nigeria to improve Cross-Border sub-regional cooperation in small arms and light weapons control. The group stated that Nigeria is currently the only member state without a functional National Commission on Small Arms. Thus we may see more efforts being put into combating illegal arms trafficking across the nation.

 

Civil Unrest / Community Disputes in the Niger Delta

12th August-  Nigerian villagers from Ugborodo village hunkered down outside a Chevron oil depot in Delta State for a third day of protests to seek better jobs, as soldiers were called in to patrol the area. The president of the National Association of Itsekiri Graduates who are key protest organizers, stated that “We have brought a DJ and traditional drums to make it more of a carnival event despite the fact that they are trying to use the military to terrorise us.” Chevron workers were evacuated from the facility in planes and helicopters. – AFP

Also in Bayelsa, a monarch known as King Walter Agri, the traditional ruler of Agrissaba in Nembe Local Government Area of Bayelsa State, was arrested by operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS) on August 7 over his alleged involvement in a protest against the Nigeria Agip Oil Company.

Angry youths and elders of his community had staged a protest against the multinational oil company last Friday over alleged non-payment of compensation for oil spill in the community, non- payment of contract done for remediation of creeks and canal since three year, and Agip’s alleged refusal to award surveillance contract and clearing of pipeline routes to indigenes.

Analyst Comments: The unrest in the Niger Delta persists as more indigenes feel emboldened to express their displeasure in the lack of development that has pervaded the area for many years now. It is clear however, that this agitation is exacerbated by the local narratives including: the belief that the revenue derived from oil is being used to develop the rest of Nigeria while neglecting the ND. 

 

Armed Robbery

17th August- Two policemen were killed on Tuesday at Hawan Kibo along the Jos-Abuja Road after armed robbers attacked a bullion van belonging to the Central Bank of Nigeria. Reporters gathered that the bullion van and the policemen had left Jos in the early hours of Tuesday en-route to Abuja.  It was learnt that after a military checkpoint along Hawan Kibo, the robbers, who were in military uniforms, emerged from a bush and engaged the police team in a shootout.

Analyst Comments: The fashion choice of the armed robbers along Jos-Abuja highway highlights familiar tactics of criminals perpetrating the act while dressed in military uniforms. Criminals wearing military uniforms are not a new occurrence in Nigeria and their use while carrying out crime is a known tactic in the country. Boko Haram insurgents had on military uniforms while unleashing terror across the North East, and militants in the South West were known to be dressed in a similar fashion.

The criminals wear these uniforms because of the reaction they get while doing so. Road travelers are more likely to stop at a check point being manned by individuals in military uniforms, than they would one that is manned by plain clothes individuals. The FG and the military should actively work on preventing their uniforms from getting easily accessible, and restrict accessibility.