Amotekun: Another Sign of The Failing Nigerian State


    There are several indexes indating Nigeria as a Failing State. The most recent is the launching of operation Omatekun, a regional private security outfit in South West Nigeria on the 1st of january,2020.

    In the Social Contract, individuals explicitly or tacitly consented to surrender some of their freedom and submit to the authority of the State in exchange for protection of their remaining rights or maintenance of the social order.

    A failed or failing State is a political body that has disintegrated to a point where basic conditions and responsibilities  of a sovereign government no longer function properly.Some of the characteristics of a failed or failing  State are :

    —- erosion of legitimate authority to make cpllective decisions;

    —– inability to provide public services.

    According to the political theory of Max Weber, a State is defined according to the Fund For Peace (FFP ), as maintaining a monopoly of the legitimate use of physical force within its boarders. When this is broken ( e.g through the dominant presence of war lords, paramilitary groups, armed gangs, or terrorism ), the very existence of the State becomes dubious, and the State becomes a failed State.

    The failure or inability of the Nigerian State to maintain and or exercise the legitimate use of physical force within its boarder has resulted to the emergence of a plethora of terrorist groups, armed gangs, vigilante groups, Cult groups, illegal mining activities in Northern Nigeria, illegal refining of petroleum products in Southern Nigeria. There is the  Independent People Of Biafra (IPOB), Odua Peoples Congress (OPC (, AREWA, IYC, Fulani herders, etc.

    Every day in Nigeria,you hear of people being killed, abducted, or burnt and driven out of their communities. These crimes are comitted by different armed groups.

    On the 20th of January,2020,the news had it that 17 Nigerian Soldiers were killed  and several others abducted  in Baga , Borno State, by Boko Haram members. The more Federal Government of Nigeria tries to convince Nigerians that Boko Haram has been decimated, the harder the group strikes. Fulami herders are killing farmers on a daily bases across the States of Nigeria. There are reports of kidnappings, rapping, and killings by different armed gangs in all the States of Nigeria.

    The Nigerian Armed Forces seem overwhelmed as most times they are victms of these killings. The Nigerian  Army has been severally accused by prominent nigerians of collaborating with some of these armed groups, especially Boko Haram to unleash these terror on nigerians.

    It is evidiently obvious that the Nigerian Armed Forces has failed and is unable to protect life and properties of Nigerians.

    Operation Amotekun is viewed by many as an answer to the question of how to protect life and properties of nigerians living in  South West Nigeria. It is worthy of note that the inability of the Nigerian Government to protect her citizens has resulted to many States in Nigeria having their own private security outfits.

    The Federal Government, through the attoney general of the Federation has declared Amotekun illegal. The Nigerian Military who have proved their incompetence in tackling the insecurity in Nigeria, is threathening to DEAL with any person or group of persons who tries to undermine the non existing security architecture of the Country. However,the question is , why have the Nigerian Military and other Security agencies not been able to contain and obliterate these terrorists and armed groups?.

    The Commissioner of Police, Rivers State Command, Mr.Mustapha Dandaura , while receiving an award from a group of journalist in Port Harcourt, was reported to have said that the Nigerian Police Force is underfunded and that State Governments should  come to their aide. One may ask, why would a Government underfund her security agencies?

    Nigeria is a failing State.


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