KIDNAPPING FOR RANSOM AND ITS SOCIO-ECONOMIC EFFECTS IN NIGERIA’S NORTH-WEST (2010-2022): EVIDENCE FROM KATSINA STATE
Keywords:Effects, kidnapping, security challenge, socio-economic, ransom
The paper investigated kidnapping as an emergent security challenge and its socio-economic effects in Nigeria’s north-west region using Katsina state as a reference point between 2010 and 2022. Theoretically the paper deployed Routine Activity Theory (RAT) as its framework of analysis while methodologically the paper employed mixed methods approach with quantitative dominance in data collection and analysis. Research hypotheses were tested at 5% level of significance using non-parametric statistics (chi-square). Findings revealed that unemployment and poverty are the major factors responsible for the rising incidences of kidnapping in the state. Findings also showed that, loss of the lives of some victims, financial loss through payment of ransom, forceful closure of businesses; forceful closure of schools; and restrictions in farming activities were the major socio-economic effects of kidnapping in the state. Further finding revealed that Katsina state’s response to kidnapping in particular and armed banditry in general through amnesty programme and dialogues among others have not effectively curtailed its occurrence in the state. The paper thus concluded that kidnapping would continue to remain a major security challenge in the state in particular and the north-west in general as long as the sponsors/handlers of kidnappers are not identified and made to face the full wrath of the law. The paper recommended among others that government should come up with new policies on employment creation and poverty alleviation so as to reduce the number of idle hands on the streets; identify and prosecute the sponsors/handlers of kidnappers so as to serve as deterrent to others.
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