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Police corruption and administration of criminal justice system in Nigeria

Mohammed Aminu Umar


The words ‘corruption’ and ‘Nigerian factor’ are used interchangeably to mean the same thing in this paper. There is no gainsaying that corruption in the police system leaves much to be worried. The position which the Nigeria Police occupied is beyond mere protection of lives and property of the citizens. They are indeed considered as one of the major stakeholders in our criminal justice system. Under the law, they are conferred with powers relating to the administration of criminal justice system such as power to arrest, investigate, arraign and other ancillary issues thereto. However, these seem to be abused due to the influence of social evils such as corruption, favouritism, dishonesty, fraud, tribalism, ethnicity and even villagism. These social problems are not peculiar to the Nigeria Police alone. They are universal tendencies that existed in Nigeria but what causes worry is the degree to which this phenomena are being perpetrated in an organization considered ordinarily as a friend to citizens and due to this the citizens begin to lose hope and have no confidence in the system any more. In the light of these therefore, this paper x-rayed the powers of police relating to the administration of criminal justice system. This paper also discussed generally the state of criminal justice in Nigeria vis-à-vis the statutory duties of Nigeria Police cum the extent of how corruption manifests therein. The point is that our policing system needs to be reformed with a view to restoring the dignity of the Nigerian Police Force (NPF) in the eyes of the public.

Keywords: Nigerian Factor, corruption, Nigeria Police, administration, criminal justice