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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 78326 Find in a Library
Title: Law Enforcement and Political Change in Post-civil War Nigeria
Journal: Journal of Criminal Justice  Volume:9  Issue:2  Dated:(1981)  Pages:125-149
Author(s): M Carter; O Marenin
Date Published: 1981
Page Count: 25
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: A discussion of politics and the police in postcivil war Nigeria leads to the conclusion that the police, by the manner in which they enforce the laws, have weak effect on legitimacy orientations.
Abstract: The discussion focuses on the police and on the impact that their job performance has on the legitimacy of government. The police link the state to its citizens and are fundamental to the state's collapse when they fail to support the state against organized attack from internal groups. The Nigeria Police Force, a creation of British colonial rule, is a unitary, centrally controlled organization in a federal political system. General policy for the force is set by the Nigeria Police Council, and discipline is controlled by the Police Service Commission. Training for rank and file lasts 6 months at police academies; for officers the period is 1 year; and for specialists, 3 months. Based on very limited data, the paper concludes that an evaluation of the Nigerian police and the government tends to be more positive on general issues and more negative on specific concerns. The evaluation was based on limited surveys that had been conducted in Nigeria in the summers of 1975 and 1976, with a total of 1,292 respondents. The police were rated as generally being fair or good at keeping the peace, preventing and solving crime, and maintaining relations with the community. However, for specific areas, respondents felt that the police did not solve crimes in a reasonable period of time and discriminated against certain persons, especially in traffic offenses. Tables and 63 references are provided. (Author abstract modified)
Index Term(s): Cultural influences; Foreign police; Nigeria; Political influences; Public Attitudes/Opinion; Social change; Social cohesion
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