•3,692 lives lost to bandits
•Northwest accounts for 3,246 abductions
•Records 7 successful prison breaks
•Notes over 5,000 abductions
By Fortune Eromosele, Abuja
Following the heightened spate of insecurity, bloodletting in the country, a report has disclosed that about 6,895 persons were killed in the year 2021.
The report entitled: “Mass Atrocities Casualties Tracking 2021 Report Executive Summary,” released by Global Rights in Abuja yesterday, revealed that there have been at least 14,641 killings as a result of mass atrocities between January 2019 to December 2021.
According to the report, of the 6,895 persons killed in 2021, 844 of them were state security officers and 6051 were civilians.
“Most of the security personnel killed were military personnel killed by Boko Haram/ISWAP (277) and terrorist bandits (111). The third highest security personnel killings were by secessionist rebels in the South East (200). While most military personnel were killed in the North-East (Borno), and North-West (Zamfara), most police officers were killed in the South. Specifically, the South East,” the report stated.
The report reads in part: “The numbers for 2021 are exponentially higher than the numbers for 2020. In 2021, our tracking double verified at least 6,895 persons killed. In comparison, in 2020, at least 4,556 persons were killed, while at least 3,188 persons were killed in 2019, pointing to an exponential rise in mass atrocities across the country.
“In essence, there have been at least 14,641 killings as a result of mass atrocities between January 2019 to December 2021. The number of deaths steadily increased by 115.28 percent from 2009 to 2021.
“There are no signs of these numbers abating anytime soon, especially as Nigeria enters into its political season given its 2023 general elections which are expected to be highly contested and volatile as indicated by the number of politically related killings.”
The report noted that there were 9 prison attacks across the country, and of this number, 7 were successful resulting in the jailbreak of thousands of inmates.
“We are yet to verify the exact numbers. While the Correctional Services Authorities were able to recover some of the escaped inmates, there are hundreds still at large,” it noted.
The report further disclosed that 3,692 lives were lost to bandits, with the Northwest accounting for the highest number of deaths of about 2,900 persons, following 3,246 abductions in one year.
With the northwest maintaining its lead in highest number of atrocious killings, North Central accounted for 1,523, the North East 937, South East 707, South West with 439, the South South with 391.
“Abductions remained a significant indicator of mass atrocities in Nigeria, and have increased exponentially. The nation tilted from at least 2002 abductions occurring in 2020 to at least 5,663 in 2021.
“Five states in the north of the country accounted for over 57.3 percent of the abductions. 4 of the 5 were in the North-West and the last was in the North-Central. Of the 5,663 abductions at least 3,246 abductions recorded in the North West in 2021, 1,225 of these had occurred in Kaduna state, just barely more than the at least 1,169 abductions that took place in Zamfara State.
“In the North Central, where at least 1,522 abductions occurred, Niger state had the highest number with at least 1,127 abductions. Kaduna, Zamfara and Niger jointly contribute to at least 62.1 percent of the abductions that had occurred in Nigeria in 2021.
“Mass abductions, particularly of students remained a trend. Over 1,000 students were kidnapped in 2021, particularly in mass kidnaps in Niger, Zamfara, Kaduna, Kebbi, and Katsina states,” the report stated.
On ritual killings, the report noticed a trend in 2021 and recorded more than 180 persons killed in money and power acquiring diabolical rituals. Other attacks recorded in the report were, isolated attacks accounting for 186 killings, secessionist attacks saw 223 killed, political attacks witnessed 34 killed, mob attacks was at 41 killed. Communal clashes were 530 killed, cult clash reckoned 252 killed, while Herdsmen and Boko-Haram/ISWAP attacks observed 589 and 313 persons killed in the year 2021.