SOCIO-ECONOMIC IMPLICATIONS OF KIDNAPPING

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SOCIO-ECONOMIC IMPLICATIONS OF KIDNAPPING ON AGWA COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM IN CHIKUN LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA OF KADUNA STATE

ABSTRACT

The study examined Social Economic Implications of Kidnapping on Agwa Community Development Program in Chikun Local Government Area of Kaduna State. Objectively, three research questions were formulated. The survey design was used in the study. The sample size was 400. 400 questionnaires were administered to the respondents, but 324 questionnaires were found valid. The data gathered were analysed using simple percentage and mean. The findings revealed that: Youth Unemployment, Lack of good parental upbringing, Greed and/or lack of contentment, Largely due to political gains and Previous Ransom payments are the causes of kidnapping; The extent of kidnapping is on high extent; Small businesses are being shut down due to the activities of kidnapping, Academic activities are on the decline, Worshipers no longer feel safe going for their religious activities, People no longer go to social gatherings, and Residents are suspicious of one another are the consequences or effects of kidnapping in Agwa Community, Chikun Local Government Area of Kaduna State. Based on the findings, conclusion was drawn and recommendations given that The Nigerian Government shall come up with poverty alleviation programmes and employment opportunities, targeting youths who are mostly involved in abductions and kidnappings out of economic frustration, such as unemployment; Poverty alleviation programmes should also be directed towards addressing high incidence of poverty among women and children who are vulnerable segment of the population mostly kidnapped by terrorists or insurgents and trapped by organised criminals, ending up in abduction for force labour … .

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.0     Background of the Study

Kidnapping and violent crimes are the trending social problems that are ravaging rural communities in Chikun Local Government Area. Until recently, rural communities in Kaduna State were considered haven for people and businesses. The crime rate was low and kidnapping was at infinitesimal level, read in the pages of newspapers, seen on movies and heard on radio or street talks. This social malady has now become a general phenomenon in the state. According to Dodo (2010), kidnapping is a crime of seizing, confining, abducting or carrying away a person by force or fraud often to subject him or her to involuntary servitude in an attempt to demand a ransom. The crime involves un-lawfully seizing and carrying away a person by force or fraud or seizing and detaining a person against his or her will with the intent of carrying that person away at a later time (Garner, 2009). The strategies employed by kidnappers in the state include the use of telephones to lure their unsuspecting victims or trailing them to any location considered safe for them to strike.

In the criminal law of Nigeria, kidnapping is the taking away or abduction of a person against the person’s will, usually to hold the person in false imprisonment, a confinement without legal authority. This may be done for a ransom or in furtherance of another crime. Nseabasi, (2010) posited that kidnapping in Nigeria can be different forms: the first form comprise of the ethnic militia who employ kidnapping as the major weapon of agitation from oppression, exploitation and environmental degradation. Another form is dislodged militias and other criminals that engage in kidnapping as a means of survival. The last form of kidnappers is not militants but elements in the society that engage in any venture they consider lucrative. Other recent and digital forms of kidnapping have since emerged; terrorists or political revolutionaries like the Islamic militias (Boko haram) who employ kidnapping as a tactic to extort or seek concessions from the government and the digital or online kidnapping. This form of kidnapping directly and indirectly impacts on man and operates in two forms. One involves the kidnapping of the organisations website by hacking for a ransom while the other involves the stealing of images of children posted online by some parents.

The act of kidnapping pose serious security and development challenges to the people, residents and businesses in Chikun Local Government Area and the Kaduna State at large. For some time now many persons and businesses have continued to suffer in the hands of the kidnappers. This social milieu has remained unabated and is now a threat to the sustainability of economic activities in the local government. Adegoke (2013) noted that one country where kidnapping has become a daily occurrence in the recent past is Nigeria. (Albert and Odinwa, 2015).

The rate of kidnapping and other crimes in the Chikun Local Government has gained ascendancy in Kaduna State. Criminality with impunity in the area has opened up avenues for dangerous socio­political degradation. This no doubt has implications for the socio, economic and political development of not only the local government but also for the whole state. The situation is such that economic activities in the area are almost grounded especially Agwa Community in Chikun Local Government Area of Kaduna State. According to Essien & Ben (2013), kidnapping being a major kind of violent crime can have a destabilizing effect on the socio religious, economic and political existence of the people. It can cause disruption of social peace and economic sabotage. They further posited that when an entrepreneur is kidnapped it could lead to the closure of his business, dis-engaging his labour force and creating more unemployment among the youths. In the same vein when the bread winner of a family is kidnapped, the family and his dependents suffer devastating social and economic hardship. Therefore, in view of the foregoing, the study seeks to investigate the social economic implication of kidnapping on Agwa Community Development Program in Chikun Local Government of Kaduna.

1.1     Statement of the Problem

Kidnapping, being a traversing phenomenon, incurs victim’s oppression. However, literature has also identified various causative factors which propel perpetrators to include: economic, political, cultural, poverty and lack of gainful employment, among others. All of these social factors could have advanced the wave of kidnapping in Nigeria. Concerns are on which major factor drives kidnapping in the region. Kidnapping, has threatened social stability and even inter-group coexistence in Nigeria and particularly Agwa Communty in Chikun LGA of Kaduna State. It threatens all and sundry within the Nigerian society: residents and visitors, young and old, rich and poor, educated and uneducated, rulers and the ruled, politicians and non-politicians, law makers and even security operatives and so forth. Hitherto, the trend and pattern of kidnapping were common amongst persons of high status. Recently, almost every social category is at risk of being kidnapped. Different forms of kidnapping patterns have surfaced in Nigeria. Concerns are therefore on what pattern or trend of kidnapping is more prevalent.

Inimical consequences ranging from psychological trauma, health and bodily infirmities, social withdrawal, to financial losses and so forth; are some of the levels of devastation caused by kidnapping. While most times, the physiological effects may be borne by victims, the financial and psychosocial effects of kidnapping are being shared by relatives and well-wishers who may suffer consternations as to whether their loved ones (victims) might not be released, maimed, or even killed. Also, the entire community (society) is also not removed from the risk equation, as inimical consequences of kidnapping cause disheartening outcomes between release negotiators and abductors. Communities infested with the problem of kidnapping no longer feel secured, and social activities within such communities are usually in fright, hence individuals always would look over their shoulders thereby truncating most social activities. Recently patterns of kidnapping have emerged thereby throwing concerned communities and authorities into confusion on what levels of fraught kidnapping trends pose on society.

Governments at federal and state levels have adapted militaristic and non-kinetic approaches for addressing kidnapping. These include joint task force apprehension through mounting several check-points and amnesty programs which have not yielded desired results. Unfortunately, this unpleasant phenomenon has continued to ravage even more intensively, occurring almost frequently and intermittently in most parts of Nigeria. Against the backdrop of the largely unsuccessful militaristic and other local security initiatives that attempt to halt its occurrence within the country, there are however, concerns on how the problem of kidnapping may be resolved. It is against this backdrop which the study seeks to examine Social Economic Implications of Kidnapping on Agwa Community Development Program in Chikun Local Government Area of Kaduna State.

1.2     Objectives of the Study

The main objective of this study is to find out the Social Economic Implications of Kidnapping on Agwa Community Development Program in Chikun Local Government Area of Kaduna State. Other specific objectives are to:

  1. Identify the causes of kidnapping in Agwa Community, Chikun Local Government Area of Kaduna State.

  2. Examine the extent of kidnapping in Agwa Community, Chikun Local Government Area of Kaduna State.

  3. Assess the consequences or effects of kidnapping in Agwa Community, Chikun Local Government Area of Kaduna State.

1.3     Research Questions

 The following research questions are to guide the study:

  1. What are the causes of kidnapping in Agwa Community, Chikun Local Government Area of Kaduna State?

  2. What is the extent of kidnapping in Agwa Community, Chikun Local Government Area of Kaduna State?

  3. What are the consequences or effects of kidnapping in Agwa Community, Chikun Local Government Area of Kaduna State?

1.4     Significance of the Study

This study, being an exploration of a lingering and seemingly intractable and protracted social problem, will be of enormous significance to future researchers on kidnapping and similar violent crimes, especially since it is explored from a holistic perspective. It is hoped that this research would aid the various levels of government, policy experts and analysts in grasping the genuine causes and impacts of kidnapping. Ultimately, the study would contribute to closing the gap on the dearth of literature that exists on kidnapping, on the one hand, and other violent crimes, on the other hand.

This study will be of significant value relevant to individuals, families, groups, governmental and non-governmental agencies (especially faith-based organizations) involved in related criminal justice activity all over Nigeria. That is, the religious leaders, law enforcement agents (police and joint military task force) and other security and correctional agents interested in formulation, execution or reformation of the criminals among us.

1.5     Scope of the Study

The researcher’s main task would be to examine the socio-economic implication of kidnapping in Agwa Community, Chikun Local Government Area of Kaduna State.

1.6     Definition of Key Terms

A brief explanatory remark on the key terms will be pertinent to aid a better understanding of the topic under study. The terms include the following: socio-economic, implication, and kidnapping.

Kidnapping: Kidnapping is the taking away of a person by force, threat or deceit, with intent to cause him to be detained against his will. It may be done for ransom or for political purposes. Also it can be seen as; The abduction of another person with an intent to hold him for ransom or reward; or use him as a shield or hostage; or accomplish or aid the commission of any felony or flight there from or inflict physical injury upon him, or to violate him sexually.

Socio-Economic: Economic situation of a society. It is a process of quantitative, qualitative and structural changes that are a result of actions of subjects taken within social (economic) practice. This changes influence life conditions in the following fields: material conditions (possibility to satisfy needs associated with consumption of goods and services; it is related with the phenomena of economic growth), economic structure and entrepreneurship, access to public goods and services (that results in changes of education level, a way of taking care of someone’s health etc.), relations within social system (integration between individuals, trust, security, social conflicts), environment condition, and life satisfaction.

Implication: A possible effect or result of an action. The conclusion that can be drawn from something although it is not explicitly stated.

Community Development: Community development is a process where community members are supported by agencies to identify and take collective action on issues which are important to them. Community development empowers community members and creates stronger and more connected communities. Community development is a holistic approach grounded in principles of empowerment, human rights, inclusion, social justice, self-determination and collective action.

Program: program is a plan which has been developed for a particular purpose.

 

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