Read how violence claimed 10,665 lives in Nigeria

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Armed Bandits

By Kazeem Ugbodaga

Violence has claimed the lives of 10,665 Nigerians in 2018, a report conducted by the Nigeria Watch has revealed.

The research project monitors lethal violence, conflicts, and human security in Nigeria. It began in July 2006 and is based on the campus of the University of Ibadan with the support of the French Institute for Research in Africa (IFRA-Nigeria) since July 2013.

The report released recently showed that there was a 1.4% increase in the number of violent deaths in Nigeria in 2018, as fatalities increased from 10,515 in 2017 to 10,665 in 2018.

According to the report, the main causes of violent deaths in Nigeria were crime, political issues, land issues, religious issues, cattle grazing and road accidents.

It said Boko Haram conflict killed 2,135 in 2018, less than the 2,829 fatalities in 2017, accounting for 28% decrease.

The report said cult related killings accounted for 453 deaths in 162 incidents while 238 people were killed in 76 kidnap incidents.

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Also, the report revealed that in 2018, 2,331 victims were killed in 350 lethal incidents involving security operatives.

Ogun State, according to the report, maintained its position in 2018 as the state with the highest prevalence of fatal road accidents.

The most dangerous states in Nigeria in 2018, the report said included Borno, Zamfara, Benue, Kaduna and Adamawa, as the states were mostly ravaged by the Boko Haram insurgency, banditry and pastoral conflicts.

It added that Ekiti, Gombe, Jigawa, Osun and Kebbi States were relatively peaceful.

The report stated that 2018 marked a rise in general crime across the country, as banditry was prevalent in Zamfara and Kaduna States, while the first quarter of the year witnessed massive killings in Benue and Plateau States by alleged herdsmen, as Rivers and Lagos States also recorded large incidents of cult attacks in 2018.

“Delta, Ebonyi, Cross River and Akwa Ibom witnessed rise in inter-state and intra-communal clashes that resulted in several loss of lives and properties. Despite the fact that the overall number of fatalities, Boko Haram insurgency reduced in 2018, as many casualties were recorded in attacks on military bases in Tumbum Gini, Metele and Gashigar in Abadam LGA, Zari and Gudumbali in Guzamala LGA and Damasak in Mobbar LGA, Borno state, as well as in Kukareta in Damaturu LGA, Yobe State.