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Key findings
  • Crime/insecurity ranks at the top of Nigerians’ list of the most important problems that the government should address.
  • Majorities of Nigerians say they felt unsafe while walking in their neighbourhood (61%) and feared crime in their home (51%) at least once during the previous year.
  • More than three-fourths (77%) of citizens say Nigeria is a “somewhat unsafe” or “very unsafe” country to live in.
  • Nigerians consider theft/break-ins, robbery, and kidnapping the most serious threats to their safety and security in their neighbourhoods.

the Islamic State West Africa Province to herder-farmer conflict to kidnapping-for-ransom by bandits, violence has surged across all 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory Abuja without much success by government agencies trying to curb insecurity ahead of the 2023 general elections (Nextier, 2022; Daka, 2022).

Recent headlines hardly scratch the surface: a deadly attack on an Abuja-Kaduna train in which 61 people were kidnapped for ransom (Ojiego, 2022); an attack on President Muhammadu Buhari’s convoy in his home state (Ayitogo, 2022); killings and kidnappings of religious worshipers and clergy (Mwai, 2022; Associated Press, 2022; Al Jazeera, 2022; Premium Times, 2022). Armed bandits killed more than 2,600 civilians in 2021 (Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect, 2022), and violence of all kinds only intensified in 2022 (ACLED, 2022; Yusuf, 2022).

The latest Afrobarometer survey in Nigeria shows that people’s concern about crime/insecurity also continues to rise, as a growing number rank it as the most important problem their government should address. A majority of citizens report feeling unsafe and describe Nigeria as an unsafe place to live. Most consider abductions a “very serious” problem. Most also distrust the police and give their government a failing grade on fighting crime.

Raphael Mbaegbu

Raphael is a project manager for NOI Polls

Sunday Duntoye

Sunday is the data manager for NOI Polls