Former Chief of Army, Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai (retd), has urged for a unified and comprehensive approach to address the rising challenge of organized crime in Nigeria.
During his speech at a one-day international conference held in Abuja, Buratai highlighted the crucial role of law enforcement agencies, government institutions, and the general public in protecting the country’s future.
The conference, titled “Emergent Threats to National Security: Organized Crime Networks,” was organized by Igbinedion University, Okada, in collaboration with the Buratai Centre for Contemporary Security Affairs.
Buratai expressed concern about the prevailing situation in Nigeria, revealing that the country scored 7.15 out of 10 in terms of criminality, ranking second out of 54 African countries and first among the 15 West African nations.
“Nigeria is standing at a critical juncture, ranked 5th out of 193 countries on the Global Organized Crime, GOC, Index. The alarming reality of these crimes, from illicit oil theft to the calculated displacement of communities for mining, cannot be swept under the rug.
“These multifaceted crimes not only undermine the stability and well-being of affected regions but also perpetuate a cycle of violence and exploitation,” he said.
“As the Index results show, the countries with the highest criminality levels are those experiencing conflict or fragility.
”We must learn from this and enhance our socio-economic development, border control measures, counter-terrorism efforts, and law enforcement capabilities.”
Emphasizing the importance of collaboration, the former Chief of Army Staff highlighted the need for governments, international organizations, and law enforcement agencies to work together comprehensively to tackle these challenges.
To accomplish this, he suggested the implementation of strict measures, conducting thorough investigations, and promoting sustainable development initiatives.