LOCAL INFORMATION, KNOWLEDGE RESOURCES AND MANAGEMENT OF URBAN SECURITY ISSUES IN EMERGING MULTI ETHNIC CITIES: THE CASE OF NIGERIA
المعلومة المحلية، الموارد المعرفية و تسيير قضايا الأمن الحضري في المدن الناشئة متعدد الإثنيات: حالة نيجيريا
L’INFORMATION LOCALE, LES RESSOURCES DE CONNAISSANCES ET LA GESTION DES QUESTIONS DE SÉCURITÉ URBAINE DANS LES VILLES MULTIETHNIQUES ÉMERGENTES : LE CAS DU NIGERIA
Professor Tajudeen AKANJI
Institute for Peace and Strategic Studies,
University of Ibadan, Nigeria
Security issues appear to be more fundamental in the developmental plans of many states in Nigeria occasioned by the emergence of new urban centres in the country. Civil authorities have found it more expedient now to cooperate with Police and other security agencies in delivering their duties to the population, because, urban security appears to be a shared target especially because the influence of cultural pluralism in the new urban cities in Nigeria. These have become serious issues as a result of the recent surge in urban crimes which include kidnapping, and violent robberies, among other urban crimes. Some scholars have blamed ethnic diversity for the increasing security challenges. Some factors like globalization, information communication technology, (ICT), changing nature of conflicts, declining infrastructure, surveillance and police response readiness, social features of the urban settlements, segregated urban settlement patterns, such as segregated trades and specializations which makes some particular trades to be dominated and protected by particular ethnic groups also tend to exert tremendous pressure on security management in multi ethnic urban cities. The differentiation of citizenship along the indigene-settler classification also creates additional problems. There is therefore the need for security agencies in urban cities to take into perspectives the interrogation of relevant local information and knowledge resources that may serve as indicators in the urban security barometer. This paper therefore examines the importance of certain information parameters in urban security management and the collaborative efforts of civil authorities and the security agencies in coping with security issues in the emerging urban cities in Nigeria.
Key Words: Knowledge resources, Urban violence, Indigene-settler, Cultural pluralism, Security management.
Les problèmes de sécurité semblent être plus fondamentaux dans les plans de développement de nombreux États du Nigéria occasionnés par l’émergence de nouveaux centres urbains dans le pays. Les autorités civiles ont jugé plus opportun maintenant de coopérer avec la police et d’autres agences de sécurité pour s’acquitter de leurs fonctions auprès de la population, car la sécurité urbaine semble être une cible commune, en particulier en raison de l’influence du pluralisme culturel dans les nouvelles villes du Nigéria. Ces problèmes sont devenus graves en raison de la récente flambée des délits en milieu urbain, notamment les enlèvements et les vols avec violence, entre autres délits. Certains universitaires ont accusé la diversité ethnique de l’augmentation des problèmes de sécurité. Certains facteurs tels que la mondialisation, les technologies de l’information et de la communication (TIC), la nature changeante des conflits, le déclin des infrastructures, la surveillance et l’état de préparation de la police, les caractéristiques sociales des établissements urbains, les modes d’installation urbaine ségrégués, tels que les métiers séparés et les spécialisations qui rendent certains métiers particuliers dominés et protégés par des groupes ethniques particuliers ont également tendance à exercer une pression énorme sur la gestion de la sécurité dans les villes multi-ethniques. La différenciation de la citoyenneté selon la classification des colons indigènes crée également des problèmes supplémentaires. Il est donc nécessaire que les agences de sécurité dans les villes prennent en compte l’interrogation des informations locales pertinentes et des ressources de connaissances qui peuvent servir d’indicateurs dans le baromètre de la sécurité urbaine. Cet article examine donc l’importance de certains paramètres d’information dans la gestion de la sécurité urbaine et les efforts de collaboration des autorités civiles et des agences de sécurité pour faire face aux problèmes de sécurité dans les villes émergentes du Nigéria.
Mots clés: Ressources de connaissances, violence urbaine, colonisation indigene, pluralisme culturel, gestion de la sécurité.
Current discussions on urban security management have therefore, given growing importance to the role of local information and knowledge resources, circulation and utilization. The discussions are set against the background of global urbanization, discussions on the extent to which cities draw on knowledge resources and contribute to security architecture, as well as other multi-ethnic issues. In the main time, debates deal with the issues surrounding local information sources and knowledge resources in tackling the various city problems (Campbell, 2016). As urbanization process is getting more concentrated in the cities at the expense of rural areas, greater attention to changing knowledge resources and local information is needed for security management (Waller, 2006). However, numerous processes are currently transforming knowledge resources and management: the expansion of information and communication technology infrastructure (ICT), the spatialization of information through the use of geo-technologies (geographic information systems, real-time monitoring with GPS), and interfaces with local citizens through open-access platforms (Baud, Pfeffer, Sydenstricker and Stoter, 2011).
The world’s population is rapidly increasing, and the global population has now reached 7.8 billion as of October 2019 (www.worldometers.info). To a certain extent, the population increase has been promoting the unprecedented development of urbanization process globally since the 21st century. As predicted by the United Nations, the proportion of the world urban population will definitely have a larger growth by 2025 as urbanization has become an important trend. The city size is an important problem in research of urbanization rate and analysis of city security problems in many states of the world. Urbanization worldwide has reached more than half of the world’s population and has become one of the first structural aspects that influence cities and their security. Since this trend will increase, criminality will be mainly urban and increasingly polymorphous, complex and difficult to contain through the spontaneous social control which characterizes rural areas and small towns (Beijing Statistical Year Book, 2011).
Urban security, known to be the absence of a serious threat with regards to criminality and the subjective perception of protection, today has main dependence on various structural and local factors (Adorno, 1997). In addition, the rise of megalopolises, comprising more than 10 million inhabitants, as centres of power have a sphere of influence that span over various cities; therefore, delinquency will become even more complex for the interaction among cities. This has an impact on certain forms of criminality, such as organized crime, kidnapping and human trafficking. As urbanization grows, the cities become globalized and crime increases in complexity. This evolution forces us to reinvent the co-production of security in new contexts, with the participation of both state and local actors such as civil society (Findlay, 1999). In the same vein, the security concerns and issues have actually grown to be more fundamental in the developmental plans of many states in Nigeria triggered by the emergence of urban centres in the country. These have become serious issues as a result of the recent surge in urban crimes which include kidnapping, terrorism, killing for rituals and violent robberies, among others.
However, the base number of urban population is large and the population density is high in some Nigerian cities, which obviously increases the population influenced by some disasters, and the consequences are also significantly aggravated. On the other hand, the problems in public safety, resource use and public service brought about by population issues also become the important factors affecting urban healthy operation (Davies, 2006). In the same vein, the type of urban growth that has taken place in Nigeria implies an uncontrollable sprawl that leads to fragmented city lives with low levels of social cohesion, with unequal access to social and urban services, and with heterogeneous values and processes of socialization among youth and citizenry at large. In addition, the migratory process entails the coexistence of diverse cultures within cities like Lagos, Port Harcourt, Abuja, Zaria, Kaduna, Ibadan among others, highlights the challenge of managing these differences and the conflicts they provoke (Abiodun, Onafowora, and Nwannenaya, 2018).
Consequently, the various forms of criminality vary by urban areas, reaching in some cases to lawless neighbourhoods as occasioned by globalization, information communication technology,(ICT), changing nature of conflicts, declining infrastructure, surveillance and police response readiness, social features of the urban settlements, differentiation of citizenship (indigene-settler dichotomy), and segregated urban settlement patterns (Giezen, 2012). As we can observe, terrorist tendencies and the radicalization of young people are also increasingly urban-centred today. Many of those who commit terrorist acts are being radicalized in their local urban communities; the concentration of populations in urban areas also makes cities attractive targets for terrorist attacks. Together, these developments and trends demonstrate why we need to make it a priority to engage more systematically and effectively for urban safety with particular attention to the systems of urban planning, legislation, governance and the socio-economy of urban centres. This engagement needs to be delivered at the level of neighbourhoods with people at the centre of land, housing, infrastructure and basic service provision (Muggah, 2016). These elements tend to exert tremendous pressure on security management in urban multi-ethnic cities in the country.
I – Conceptual Frameworks
1- Urban area
Before security can be discussed in an urban context, it is therefore necessary to establish a common understanding of some concepts. The word “urban” must first be defined. According to Chandan (2015), urban areas refer to places with a high population density. Chandan (2015) submits that there are criteria used to various countries to decide in determining a place as urban and they include: population size, population density, type of economic activity, physical characteristics, level of infrastructure, or combination of all these criteria. Uchida and Nelson (2017) argue that nations in the world use population thresholds as a means of identifying settlements as urban; while the most population thresholds used are 2000 inhabitants; 5000 inhabitants. However, Germany used the lowest density threshold of 150 persons per sq.km while China and Seychelles went with 1500 inhabitants. In the same vein, the World Bank’s Development Report, 2009 agreed by identifying all settlements above a certain minimum population size and population density that are within a certain travel time by road as urban area. In what looks contrary to the above submission, Chimitz, Uriel, and Williams (2017) concluded that an urban area or city is defined as soon as it is made up of 50,000 to 100,000 inhabitants depending on the country’s size. Generally, urban area is known to be a large town or a populous place.
2- Concept of urban security
Urban security is defined as a way of identifying and remediating the threats and vulnerabilities from a people- centred vs a state-centric perspective in a society (Chandan, 2015). In addition to addressing the prevention of crime and violence, urban security also means the enhancement of individual rights including the physical, social and psychological integrity of a person. As such, urban security is a complementary concept to crime prevention, as it starts from the observation that inadequate urban development, local governance; social and territorial exclusion patterns instigate crime and violence. In this perspective, urban security employs a participatory process in addressing the risk factors, and above all, protection factors of insecurity in urban cities, creating the conditions for more sustainable, inclusive, cohesive and habitable cities. At issue too are chronic vulnerabilities for city dwellers arising from basic needs (including food, shelter, and health); contextual vulnerabilities created via social, economic and political processes; and the ones generated by disasters, whether natural or man-made (UN- Habitat , 2015). While the report touches on chronic and extreme vulnerabilities, the main focus is on contextual threats to people in cities, especially those involving violence and crime.
As urban areas have become increasingly larger and more densely populated with poorly planned urbanization trends, armed conflicts are increasingly being fought in cities. This brings with it not only the direct effects of displacement, injury and death, but also cumulative and long-term impacts on essential services, with consequences for people’s health, education, livelihoods and dignity (International Committee of Red Cross, 2016). Terrorism and radicalization of young people are also increasingly urban-centred today. Many of those who commit terrorist acts are being radicalized in their local urban communities; the concentration of populations in urban areas also makes cities attractive targets for terrorist attacks. Together, these developments and trends demonstrate why we need to make it a priority to engage more systematically and effectively for urban safety with particular attention to the systems of urban planning, legislation, governance and the socio-economy of urban centres (Widnier and Pavesi, 2016).
Concept of Local Information (LI)
Local information (LI) has given birth to various participatory tools that have come to the aid of urban safety and security with notable developments in our cities. The concept of local information (LI) where methods to gather information by, about and with local people has been in use since the year 1970s, over five (5) decades now is still burning like fire in urban security management nowadays (Masson, 2016). Local information-gathering for urban security management is organized as town hall meetings and focus group discussions; it can also involve safety walks and other interactive sessions, and on- the-ground methods from participatory tool-kits (Social Development Direct, 2013). Using this strategy of security management in urban cities can be better understood as a necessary step towards finding workable solutions to all sorts of security issues in urban cities.
Local information (LI) also involves all-encompassing information-gathering strategies, lending voices to communities in the creation of urban safety and security initiatives. That is the reason Skogan (2009) elaborated that another virile step in urban security management in a state is to ensure involvement civil society leaders and groups in anti-violence interventions. This effort has achieved measurable reductions in urban violence in all ramifications. This is much more effective in the Chinese urban cities and other Europeans cities. Local information (LI) also means as a way of localizing data in the contexts of interest for urban safety and security management. Information can be hard to be gathered should there are no systems in place to collect it. Therefore, information is power, and local interest groups know this and will often seek to shape the data collected to promote their security, and socio-economic interests in the society (Georgiadou and Stoter, 2010).
Concept of knowledge resources (KR)
A knowledge resource (KR) is a means of addressing urban security through the establishment of institutionalized knowledge networks, or observatories, to share responsibilities for monitoring local contexts (Baud and De Wit, 2011). The observatories are nowadays existing at the global, regional, national, and city levels. Knowledge resources (KR) include data aggregators, making qualitative and quantitative data and studies on different aspects of societal phenomenon available. KR has adequately been helpful in exposing all forms of urban security threats and tackling easier in advanced nations of the US, UK, China, France and others (Kania and Kremer, 2011). The overwhelming conclusion is that effective urban security interventions require a wholly-localized understanding of how individuals, households, local groups and communities become active players in the prevention of urban violence, and how violence dynamics work in a particular area. Security interventions that draw on local data and knowledge resources (KR) have a higher chance of effectiveness than those which operate outside the paradigm (Wennmann and Ganson 2016).
II – Methodology
The study is ex-post facto research, relying on the data readily documented overtime. The study area is in Nigerian cities, this is due to the fact that one security issue in any part of the country will definitely have consequences on the other. It is entirely a qualitative study. Secondary materials such as journals, books, unpublished papers, official documents of the governments and newspapers were used. In the course of the research, the researcher consulted the main libraries of the Universities of Ibadan and that of the University College, London library, United Kingdom respectively.
Overview of security threats and triggers in multi-ethnic cities in Nigeria
Considering human security as a public good is useful in providing a common perspective for asserting the need for governments to take responsibility for urban safety and security. The violence, security of tenure and disasters; each has specific impacts on individuals and households. Meanwhile, factors like globalization, information communication technology, (ICT), changing nature of conflicts, declining infrastructure, surveillance and police response readiness, social features of the urban settlements, segregated urban settlement patterns have given room to escalation of the various security threats in multi-ethnic cities in Nigeria in recent times. Uchida and Nelson, (2017) highlighted some of the urban security threats to include;
Burglary is known as a crime of either entering a building as a trespasser with the intention of committing theft, rape, grievous bodily harm, or damage, or, having entered as a trespasser, of committing one or more of these offences. It also means illegal entry of a building with an intent to commit a crime especially theft and this problem is common in Nigerian cities of Lagos, Ibadan, Abuja, Port Harcourt among others.
This refers to a process in which rich residents moving to an area and some changes take place due to the influx of wealth. As wealthier inhabitants move into an area that is already populated with lower-income residents, the neighbourhood begins to change as well. Often this will spark an urban renewal process, which cleans up the town, but often leads to an increase in rent, taxes, and other items. Sometimes this change means that the previous residents can no longer afford to live in that neighbourhood, posing a security threat.
In some urban cities in Nigeria, there is violence of intolerance and bigotry, intended to hurt and intimidate others because of their race, ethnicity, national origin, religious, sexual orientation, or disability. However, any of the various crimes (as assault or defacement of property) when motivated by hostility to the victim as a member of a group (as one based on colour, creed, gender, or sexual orientation poses security threat to humanity and the society.
Theft and armed robbery
Nearly in all the various multi-ethnic cities in the country, there exists the crime of using, or threatening to use, force to steal. This also means stealing of property from a person by using or threatening to use force. Armed robberies are observed in our various cities on daily basis; the gang of robbers is seen attacking some financial banks and other places, killing the innocent ones in order to cart away some loots. There have been various cases of theft and armed robbery at Guaranty Trust Bank, Ogba, Lagos in 2017 where over N75milion was carted away and human lives wasted; Wema Bank robbery in Akure in 2018 and the failed robbery at First Bank, Mpape, Abuja in December, 2019 respectively (Odunsi, 2019).
This refers to disagreements or fighting between different groups of people in a state. The threat has even grown to become a trend in some Nigerian cities. It is a state of dissatisfaction, disturbance, and agitation, typically involving public demonstrations or disorder (Odunsi, 2019). This recently led to a disturbed or uneasy state between Hausas and Yoruba settlers in Mile 2 and Alaba Market in Lagos State in 2017.
Tenure insecurity and forced eviction
The second threat to urban safety and security that this paper examines is the growing worldwide problem of insecure tenure of the urban poor and the threat of forced eviction from public and private land, which they occupy with or without legal permission. More recently, freedom from forced eviction has become recognized as a fundamental human right within human rights law. For example, a landowner who has, in the past, authorized tenants to settle on his land now wants to develop it or to sell it to a developer. He refuses to collect rent and asks the occupants to move out. This is one of serious threats bedeviling security in Nigerian multi-ethnic cities, Lagos, Abuja, Kano, Port Harcourt, Ibadan and others.
Violence against women
Moreover, there is more pronouncement of violence against women in Nigerian cities. The threat is any act of gender-based violence that results in, or is likely to result in physical, sexual or psychological harm or suffering to women, including threats of such acts, coercion or arbitrary deprivation of liberty, whether occurring in public or in private life (UN Women, 2015). In order to gain a more comprehensive view of urban insecurity, it is also important to disaggregate specific security challenges according to gender. Typically, women tend to be more vulnerable in the private sphere whereas men are more vulnerable in the public sphere. Hence, most attacks perpetrated on women are from attackers known to them, whereas men are commonly more prone to attack from unknown perpetrators (Fine, 2016).
Kidnapping, raping and killings
This has remained a security threat in Nigerian cities today and everyone is not safe! Nigerians are on daily basis, scared of the growing menace of Fulani herdsmen kidnapping and killings that have laid siege to almost all the highways in the South West; South-South, South East, North West, North Central and other regions in the country (Abiodun, Ayo-Adeyekun, Onafowora and Nwannenaya, 2019). There are also reports of cattle herdsmen who carry out assaults on people such as raping of our women and in some occasions, even in the presence of their husbands.
STRENGTHS OF LOCAL INFORMATION AND KNOWLEDGE RESOURCES IN THE MANAGEMENT OF URBAN SECURITY THREATS IN NIGERIA
Most Nigerian cities are currently bedevilled with all sorts of security threats, hindering economic growth and human survival. The general concern now is how to ensure perfect management of urban security issues in multi-ethnic cities in the country like Lagos, Abakaliki, Abuja, Owerri, Ibadan, Kaduna, Kano, Lokoja, Akure and others, ranging from kidnapping and killings for rituals, armed robberies, indigene-settler conflict among others. The growing insecurity in the urban cities, therefore, urgently demands employment of local information (LI) and knowledge resources (KR) within urban governance, for swift management. It is believed that urban security issues would become transformed through digitization, the use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and also spatialized through the use of geographic information systems (GIS) (Richter 2014). The CCTV cameras installed in the various places in conjunction with the information/intelligence gathered from the local citizens and residents help a lot in managing or curbing the crises that brew up in the areas.
The swift response currently being taken as far as urban security management is concerned in Lagos State, and other cities in Nigeria are working out in all ramifications. For instance, in Lagos, there is existence of Neighbourhood Safety and Security Corps (NSSC) who monitors all the various nooks and cranies of the streets and other parts; the Corps functions effectively as a result of the various local information and intelligence gathered from the local residents or citizens. The popular kidnapper in Lagos known as “Evans” was easily tracked and caught following the local information and knowledge resources available to the security personnel. McCall and Dunn (2012), explained the extent to which spatial dimensions are included in such knowledge-building processes, which could be geographic information systems, GIS-based; maps, visualisations and others. In addition, Richter (2014) argued that the main digitized processes of knowledge resources management include; hybrid knowledge resource/management systems, with several modes of interaction such as: mobile phones, internet, face to face contact, CCTV reports among others, as coordinated by urban cities’ administrations.
The local information (LI) focuses specifically on local intelligence management in which the urban area plays a central role, both within government and in interaction with citizens. In the main time, local information (LI) and knowledge resources (KR) are specifically interested in the introduction of digitized information, electronic platforms, and GIS-based systems in urban security management, and to what extent digital KR activities are linked between line departments (security agencies, traffic, water offices, town planning, public works), and interfaces with local citizens (Ritcher, 2014). The rationales for introducing ICT-GIS-based knowledge resources/management and local information are meant to promote: strategic urban security and land use planning; determining geographic boundaries as a pre-condition for more effective urban security and development planning; streamlining work processes of urban city government relations with other citizens and the private sector; and lastly for mapping, location of urban facilities and needs/poverty assessment respectively (Giezen, 2012).
In the multi-ethnic cities like Lagos, Port Harcourt, Ibadan, Zaria, Kano and other cities in Nigeria, there is the need for a transformative vision to be developed by the government in a bid to reduce the existing indigene-settler segregation/impasse, and the inequalities existing among the various ethnic groups to promote peaceful coexistence. Secondly, there is the need for urban strategic planning on security by the existing security agencies in the cities to curtail the increasing security threats to peace and security (Uchida and Nelson, 2017).
Moreover, it is recommended that there should be the linking of digital security databases, maps, and the provision of up-to-date maps which showed the spatial spread of urban phenomena and problems, for easy security enhancement and strategic decision-making. Also, there should be a security process whereby data is collected, organized, and analyzed to inform urban development and security policies. All the various crimes in the cities will be closely monitored and nipped in the bud. This, if accomplished, would definitely attract municipal investments to urban and poorly serviced areas for greater social inclusion, economic development, environmental protection and social responsibility (Odunsi, 2019). This is due to the fact that new development plan translates those terms into concrete issues; utilizing improved data production and administrative modernization in urban security management in Nigeria.
In the same vein, it is also recommended that there should be introduction of digitized knowledge process with the aid of local information for urban security improvement and effectiveness. This will definitely bring the focus of e-governance initiatives designed to improve work processes and enhance access and delivery of urban administration services to residents while aiming to strengthen effective security architecture.
It is also recommended that urban administrations that employ the use of local information and knowledge resources strategies find it easy to map out the deprived areas in order to rationalize budget allocations to those urban areas with the most pressing needs; this actually worked out in curbing the various security disturbances in Cape Town in South Africa (Tan and Ren, 2015). This is a situation whereby a composite deprivation index (CDI) together with the geographic information systems (GIS) models is developed by Nigerian government to analyze the spatial concentration of deprivations as tools for strategic decision-making. Both tools will provide basic information for decision-making on security issues and location of dearth of infrastructure that could have led to eruption of violence. The models promote a compact city, help determine facility prioritization for informal settlements, and reduce pressures in urban areas.
It is recommended that Nigerian government should endeavour to work closely with private sector and also cooperate with Nigerian universities for knowledge exchange and contestation.
The universities are research institutions and they are knowledge producers in consultation processes and in feedback processes urban security issues management in the country.
Recognition of importance of public space is also very imperative and recommended in urban security management. It is recommended that urban societies in Nigeria should be the ones featuring interconnected neighbourhoods, each offering elements of social integration and cohesion and providing public spaces as centres for an acculturation of citizenship values and living together in security (Szabo, Alavarado, Marmulejo and Wang, 2015). In this case, there would be existence of libraries and cultural centres where people are connected to educational resources, or plazas, parks and the like which bring inhabitants together informally through local information (LI) and knowledge resources (KR). Police stations may be redesigned to create public access, or new facilities built. Public escalators may be installed in steeply sloped slums in the cities to improve mobility and security (Geisinger, 2015).
The Report of the Prevention Institute, Oakland (2015) availed us the strength of LI and KR also lies in the integration of community safety and perceptions of security into land use planning, a relatively new and welcome development for urban security management and planning. Related directly to this is the role of community members. The most successful urban security plans draw not only on people with technical knowledge, but also (in dialogue and exchange with technical experts) on local information (LI)of different ages and backgrounds who speak about their experiences, envision safer streets, cities and help build neighbourhood peace and security (Prevention Institute, 2015). The collaborations of both the local information and employment of knowledge resources give room for enabling environment for the co- production of safety for all in urban areas. It is in reality that without engaging the locals, municipal leadership and others in the cities, urban violence reduction and prevention plans cannot succeed.
In a bid to ensure adequate urban security management in Nigeria, it is imperative for the government to work with civil society actors as co-producers of security. The urban security management is much more assisted with perfected methods and approaches involving civil society actors in anti-violence interventions. There have been clear gains over the last two decades in this area in some European nations of France, Germany, United Kingdom and others.
Local information (LI) has given birth to various participatory tools that have come to the aid of urban safety and security management with notable developments in our cities. Local information (LI) helps in information-gathering for urban security network (Szabo etal, 2015). It is, therefore, recommended in Nigerian urban multi-ethnic cities that various town hall meetings and focus group discussions be organized; it should also involve safety walks and other interactive sessions, on- the-ground methods from participatory toolkits.
III. OTHER RECOMMENDATIONS ON URBAN SECURITY MANAGEMENT IN NIGERIAN MULTI-ETHNIC CITIES INCLUDE:
There should be mandatory further strengthening of the publicity and education on city safety. In recent years, the Nigerian academic circles and government have included the city safety into the research and decision-making perspective. However, compared with the developed countries, the safety awareness of Nigerian urban citizens are still weak, and the safety awareness and knowledge are relatively lacking. Therefore, it is necessary to include the disaster prevention awareness, refugee ways and other knowledge and education into citizens’ daily lives, such as organizing community volunteer to conduct advocacy and counselling on a regular basis, and emergency drills if necessary.
Strengthening the laws and regulations for city planning, correct the defects in existing municipal engineering, and strengthen the safety of municipal works under construction. Attentions were not paid to the existing engineering in that building age, and there may be some problems. However, with the new requirements of city development for city safety, it is necessary to transform the existing projects with defects. New materials, new technologies and new methods shall be used to meet the safety requirements. In addition, the supervision on the works under construction must be strengthened.
Strengthening the legalized management of the city safety should be taken as priority. The city disaster prevention and mitigation shall be legalized and standardized. The laws are mandatory, and the city safety legislation can effectively eliminate the unnecessary man-made behaviours endangering the city safety. It can not only have a positive effect on the city’s public safety management, but also have a certain guiding significance in city disaster prevention during city construction and development.
Lastly, several participatory information-gathering committees should be constituted to improve the strategic urban security initiatives in the cities. In addition, further step in community empowerment in fostering peace and security is to involve the various civil society leaders and groups in anti-violence interventions, reducing urban violence, better data collection, research and exchange of best practices.
In conclusion, we come back to our main question of how local information and knowledge resources management has helped in transforming the various urban violence and insecurity. Urban security practitioners have indicated that they are not alone in their generational efforts. Among others there are development experts, political scientists and humanitarians, many of whom are part of the broader peacebuilding community, who are eager to dialogue and who have relevant insights and share experience together as observatories and working groups that offer good means to bring people together around a new urban agenda for urban violence reduction and prevention. Conclusively, effective urban security management in Nigeria requires a wholly-localized understanding of how individuals, households, local groups and communities become active players in the prevention of urban violence, and also addressing urban security through the establishment of institutionalized knowledge networks, or observatories, to share responsibilities for monitoring local contexts (knowledge resources). It is agreed that urban security management in Nigerian multi-ethnic cities should definitely be hinged on local data and knowledge resources (KR) which have a higher chance of effectiveness than those which operate outside the paradigm.
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