The Presidency has highlighted some of its proud achievements in the area of security over the last eight years, despite Nigeria’s rating as the third worst country with insecurity in the world, according to the Global Terrorism Index (GTI).
In a 90-page document released by the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, the Presidency said remarkable interventions implemented had impacted positively on the level of security in the country.
The building and completion of 17 Command Offices Complexes of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), with another four ongoings (Rivers, Kogi, Bauchi and Ondo) and launch of 16 new Forward Operation Bases (FOBs) across Nigeria were listed as initiatives that had impacted positively on security.
This is addition to the deployment of a more efficient National Border Management Strategy and global Migration Information and Data Analysis System (MIDAS) at five International Airports and 17 Border Crossing Points.
MIDAS is a global real-time border management system developed by International Organization for Migration (IOM) and is linked to INTERPOL and other watchlists.
“The implementation of MIDAS at the International Airport in Abuja was described by the IOM as “the largest deployment of MIDAS at any airport globally, to date,” Adesina said.
According to the document, there are now more than 97 million unique records in Nigeria’s digital identity database (NIN), as of March 2023, up from 41.5 million three years ago.
The National Policy on NIN-SIM integration has been a major reason for this surge, and the National Identification Numbers (NINs) given to both Nigerian citizens and legal residents, provide useful insights that has helped with identity management, improved security and strengthened the economy.
Also, the administration recorded huge achievement in efforts to clampdown on drug abuse which is widely believed to propel insecurity, when it arrested about 24,000 drug traffickers, including 29 barons between 2021-2022.
In addition, the presidency disclosed that the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) had secured the conviction of more than 3,400 offenders and seized more than 5,500 tons (5.5 million kilogrammes) of assorted illicit drugs.
“The value of drugs and cash seized came to more than N450 billion, while 772. 5 hectares of cannabis farms were destroyed,” the Adesina said.
In 2016, President Buhari launched the National Social Investment Programme, currently the largest such programme in Africa and one of the largest in the world. The National Social Register (NSR) of poor and vulnerable Nigerians (NSR) now contains more than 50 million persons from more than 12 million poor and vulnerable households, identified across more than 150,000 communities in the 36 States of the country and the FCT.
From this number, close to 2 million poor and vulnerable Nigerian households are allegedly currently benefiting from the Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) program, which pays a bimonthly stipend of N10,000 per household.
In addition, about 355,000 vulnerable persons have received a special one-off grant of N20,000 each in the 36 states and the FCT. The establishment of the Survival Fund, the National Youth Investment Fund, and National Special Public Works Program (774,000 beneficiaries across 774 LGAs nationwide), and the Central Bank’s Covid-19 300 billion Naira Targeted Credit Facility (TCF), have reportedly given support to millions of small businesses, households, and young people.
The Buhari Administration’s Survival Fund has provided grants (Payroll Support, Artisan and Transport Sector grants, and General MSME grants) to more than 1.2 million beneficiaries, since the last quarter of 2020. It has also provided free business registration to 250,000 MSMEs across the country.
The metrics used in the GTI ranking include: leadership and foresight, robust laws and policies, strong institutions, financial stewardship, attractive marketplace, global influence and reputation as well as helping people rise.
Nigeria, which is the most populated African nation, did not score up to 0.50 in any of the indices, with zero being the lowest and one the highest.