Insecurity: Historian advises Govt to adopt Sokoto Caliphate’s security model


A Professor of History, Prof. Attahiru Sifawa, has advised government to adopt the grassroots security mechanisms of the Sokoto Caliphate to address the security challenges in the country. The News Agency of Nigeria NAN reports.

Sifawa made the suggestion in a presentation during the Sokoto State University (SSU) Public Lecture Series, on Saturday in Sokoto.

The lecture is titled ”The Role of Sokoto Caliphate in Addressing Security Challenges in Sokoto Province from 1903-1960: Lessons for contemporary northern Nigeria”.

Sifawa said that the caliphate instituted settelite towns monitoring officials, and other internal security mechanisms that tracked movements of people in all wards, villages and towns.

”Sokoto Caliphate ensured harmonious relationship between diverse groups, justice and fairness in governance, as well as transparent dealings in resources.

”Traditional institutions can still play roles in containing security challenges and enhancing peaceful coexistence among citizens, ” he said.

He added that the caliphate admnistration ensured security presence in all domains, which helped to curtail major crimes such as robbery and banditry.

Sifawa however said that the driving force for peace and stability in any country is good leadership, and the implementation of meaningful policies that impact positively on the people.

The professor expressed concern that local governments that should drive grassroots mobilisation and ensure effective security, have been made very ineffective.

He said that the system has also pauperised people in villages, including the traditional leaders expected to contribute to the security of their areas.

According to him, in addition to activating grassroots security network, Nigeria must take steps to secure its porous borders so as to guarantee peace in the country.

”The country has more than 4,100 illegal border routes and very few are manned by security operatives; the situation need to be reversed,” Sifawa said.

The chairman of the occasion, Prof. Ahmad Bako of Usmanu Danfodio University Sokoto, advised state governments to exercise caution in the implementation of the community guards initiative.

He said thorough scrutiny must be made of the community watch volunteers to avoid engaging criminals.

Bako also advised government to robustly involve traditional rulers into the security architecture, because of their closeness to the people at the grassroots.

Earlier, the Vice Chancellor of SSU, Prof. Bashir Garba, said the lecture series was instituted to contribute to knowledge, societal development, and elicit behavioral change.

He urged government to consider the suggestions made during the lecture to improve the security of the country.

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