Armed Banditry and the Collapse of Education in Northwest Nigeria
Keywords: Armed banditry, Collapse, Education, Kidnapping of students, Northwest Nigeria
AbstractAdvancement in learning and the development of education in any organised society could only be achieved in an environment of tranquility. The prevalent armed banditry afflicting the Northwest Nigeria recently is antithetical to the development of education in that region. This paper investigated the role of armed banditry in instigating the collapse of education in Nigeria’s Northwest. The descriptive survey research design was adopted and the instrument of questionnaire was used to elicit data from respondents. A population of 3,458,854 was derived from the prone areas in the three purposively selected states of Kaduna, Katsina and Zamfara, while a sample size of 250 was derived using Gonzalez (2008) sample size formula. 250 copies of the questionnaire were administered with a response rate of 97.6%. The study observed that before the incursion of armed banditry into the Northwest, teaching-learning environment has been conducive while learning activities have been thriving. Also, students’ enrolment at schools has been unwavering and the academic performances of students have also been encouraging thus making the education sector to flourish. Two hypotheses were formulated and the data collected were analysed using Multiple Regression and ANOVA. Findings revealed that there was a positive significant relationship between armed banditry and border porosity, arms proliferation cum incursion of illegal migrants from other nations, and the presence of ungoverned spaces (R = .491a; R2 = .241); and that the incidences and consequences of banditry hindered education ( F = 20.771, p < .05; F = 23.480, p < .05; F = 14.503, p < .05; F = 25.391, p < .05; F = 16.181, p < .05; F = 14.483, p < .05) in Nigeria’s Northwest. The study concluded that state fragility and the ineffectiveness of security agencies in curbing banditry accentuated the phenomenon in Nigeria’s Northwest. It recommends that government should strengthen the security personnel by equipping them with sophisticated weapons, communication gadget and logistics to enable them to confront the bandits head-on; create an enabling environment for the youth to be gainfully employed; monitor our borderlands effectively to discourage arms proliferation; and devise a techno-based method of surveillance to monitor the ungoverned spaces.