An international human rights organisation under the aegis of Centre for Democracy and Development said at least 60,000 persons have been killed in 18 Northern states of Nigeria in the last ten years due to insecurity.
The CDD in its report titled: “Multiple Nodes, Common Cause: National Stocktake of Contemporary Insecurity and State Responses in Nigeria,” covering the North-Western states of Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Kebbi, Sokoto and Zamfara said about 14,000 people lost their lives between 2011 and 2021.
A statement issued on Tuesday night by the Director of the CDD, Idayat Hassan, said the report, which also measured conflict-related casualties in the North-Central states of the Federal Capital Territory, Kogi, Kwara, Nasarawa, Niger and Plateau, revealed that “around 11,000 people were killed in the period under review.”
According to the report, about 35, 000 persons were killed in North-East states of Adamawa, Bauchi, Borno, Gombe, Taraba and Yobe.
While tracing similar development and casualties across other geo-political zones, the CDD in the report said that similar development continued to fuel the ugly situation, especially, lack of education, absence of state actors, economic war, security forces, cultism, land use dispute, ethnicity, religion, failure of justice system, overstretched security forces and others.
In the South-South region of the country, sea piracy and robbery remained key concerns as illegal bunkering, political violence, herders/farmer clashes, oil spill, cultism, marginalisation, human trafficking, ritual killing are said to be fuelling violence and insecurity.
The report said the growing insecurity and violence in the country were also fuelled by shifting livelihoods, circulation of small arms and light weapons, corruption and inadequate access to justice, geographic and regional dynamics as well as ideological grievances.
The CDD report said the increasing prevalence of misinformation and disinformation across traditional and new media spheres may have deepened public anxiety and intergroup tensions about the mounting insecurity in the country and state responses to it.
In the South-Eastern region, the report revealed an approximate number of people killed as follows: 50 persons were killed in 2011; 92 in 2012; 68 in 2013; 22 in 2014; 50 in 2015; 225 in 2016; 325 people in 2017; 160 people in 2018. In 2019 the figure stood at 114; 110 in 2020 and; settled at 647 in 2021, which is 1,863.
The report revealed that the development equally traverses the South-Western states, especially cases of herders/farmers clashes and political issues, leading to kidnapping, rape, arson as well as inert communal unrest and division.
To address the prevailing situation, the CDD said local and national stakeholders would need to be willing to try new approaches to curtailing insecurity, stressing that the kinetic approaches favoured by the federal government may remain a mirage.
“Peacebuilding interventions are urgently needed in most, if not all, geopolitical zones to improve community cohesion in conflict-affected areas”, the report stated.
The organisation also called for further research to strengthen understanding of situation in the country, adding that “arms flow throughout Nigeria remains imprecise and would benefit from more refined, local-level analysis and mapping of sources, destinations, and routes.”
The report said, “Similarly, the relationship between narcotics production, consumption, and trafficking on the one hand, and insecurity on the other remains largely subject to speculation.
“While militants are known to consume drugs (bandits, for example, consume notable quantities of Indian hemp and tramadol), it is worth interrogating whether production centres have also emerged within the country and whether bandits or other militants profit off the trans-shipment of narcotics through the country.”