Security Agencies in Nigeria; Heads, Duties, Uniforms, Salaries; All to Know

Security Agencies in Nigeria; Functions, Duties, Uniform
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Wondering about the security agencies in Nigeria or thinking about the heads, functions, duties, and uniforms of Nigerian security agencies? This article discusses everything you need to know.

Security Agencies in Nigeria; Functions, Duties, Uniform

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Security Agencies in Nigeria – An Introduction

Security agencies are groups or institutions that their responsibilities and activities lead to the safety of an organization, territory, or locality.

They could be private or government-owned and are trained to identify and combat threats to society. Most countries of the world experience crimes and put security measures in place.

Security issues are tackled earnestly because insecurity is like a hydra-headed monster that subtly grows if left unchecked. Insecurity destabilizes a nation or locality and has serious socioeconomic effects.

Like every other country, Nigeria wishes to maintain a peaceful and secure nation, thus the presence of secu

rity agencies in Nigeria.

Over the years, the government has set up a couple of security agencies. These security agencies are charged with the functions and duties of maintaining security in the country.

Besides serving as Nigeria’s security agencies, some of these agencies also function as regulatory bodies with the preserve of prosecuting individuals on the wrong sides of the law.

This article will highlight the various security agencies in Nigeria, their general and specific functions and duties, heads, and everything you should know about them.

Let’s get right to it!

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Security Agencies in Nigeria

Security Agencies in Nigeria

The State Security Service (SSS) or Department of State Security (DSS).

The State Security Service was created on the 5th of June 1986, following the dissolution of the National Security Organization (NSO). The dissolution and creation were contained in the inaugural address made by the then military ruler, General Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida. This national security outfit is also called the Department of State Security (DSS).

State Security Service’s first headquarters was at 15, Awolowo Road, Ikoyi, Lagos State, before it was moved to Abuja during General Sani Abacha’s regime.

The national security agency has its headquarters in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory. The SSS headquarters complex in Abuja is informally called the ‘Yellow House’ and is cited on the northern edge of the Aso drive’s three-arms zone in Maitama, FCT Abuja.

It is constitutionally known as the country’s basic domestic intelligence outfit, with its primary responsibility being intelligence-gathering.

This national security agency’s personnel is also charged with safeguarding highly-placed government officials, including the President, governors, and other cabinet members.

The State Security Services operationally functions as a department within the Presidency and is under the direct control of the National Security Adviser (NSA), based on the Presidential Proclamation of 1999.

The SSS has the constitutional right to investigate any threat-posing issue with the capacity of snowballing into terrorism or insurgency. In other words, the State Security Service is beefed up to carry out counter-insurgency and counter-terrorism, surveillance, and internal security functions.

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Functions and Duties of the SSS.

The functions and duties of the SSS in Nigeria include;

  • Enforcement of the criminal laws of the country.
  • Protection and defense of the nation against domestic threats.
  • To safeguard top government officials like the; President, Vice President, Senate President, Speaker House of Representatives,  State  Governors, and their families.
  • The protection of other highly-ranked government officials and other foreign Presidents or heads of state who are visiting the country.
  • To help uphold criminal justice laws and their enforcement at both the Federal and State levels.

Head of the Nigerian State Security Service (SSS),

The Director-General heads the Nigerian State Security Service (SSS).

Heads/Director Generals of the Nigeria State Security Service (SSS) since formation in 1986.

Since its formation, the Department of State Security (DSS) has had 9 Directors General (as of 2022).

The current DG of SSS is Yusuf Magaji Bichi.

These SSS Director-Generals include;

1. Alhaji Ismaila GwarzoJune 1986 – September 1990
2. Chief Albert HorsfallSeptember 1990 – October 1992
3. Chief Peter NwaoduahOctober 1992 – June 1998
4. Colonel Kayode Are (Rtd)May 1999 – August 2007
5. Afakriya GadzamaAugust 2007 – September 2010
6. Ita EkpeyongSeptember 2010 – July 2015
7. Lawal Musa DauraJuly 2015 – August 2018
8. Matthew Seiyefa (Ag)7 August 2018 – 14 September 2018
9. Yusuf Magaji Bichi14 September 2018 – Present
Table showing the list of SSS Director-Generals

Uniform of DSS/SSS

DSS officials are usually on mufti as they’re not meant to be recognized in public. However, you can sometimes see them on a black outfit with an inscription of “DSS” on the front.

Past and Present National Security Advisers of Nigeria.

The DSS (SSS) reports directly to the Office of the NSA of Nigeria. Here is a list of the past and present NSAs of Nigeria.

No.NameDurationPresident When They Served
1Aliyu Mohammed GusauJan 1993 – 26 Aug 1993Ibrahim Babangida
2Ismaila Gwarzo26 Aug 1993 – 9 Jun 1998Ernest Shonekan and Sani Abacha
3Abdullahi Mohammed9 Jun 1998 – 29 May 1999Abdulsalami Abubakar
4Aliyu Mohammed Gusau29 May 1999 – 1 Jun 2006Olusegun Obasanjo
5Abdullahi Sarki Mukhtar1 Jun 2006 – 8 Mar 2010Olusegun Obasanjo and Umaru Musa Yar’Adua
6Aliyu Mohammed Gusau8 Mar 2010 – 18 Sep 2010Umaru Musa Yar’Adua and Goodluck Jonathan
7Kayode Are18 Sep 2010 – 4 Oct 2010Goodluck Jonathan
8Owoye Andrew Azazi4 Oct 2010 – 22 Jun 2012Goodluck Jonathan
9Sambo Dasuki22 Jun 2012 – 13 Jul 2015Goodluck Jonathan
10Babagana Monguno13 Jul 2015 – PresentMuhammadu Buhari
Table showing the past and present NSAs of Nigeria

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The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA)

In the history of security agencies of Nigeria, the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) is the first security agency established with the responsibility of eliminating the growing, processing, manufacturing, selling, exporting, distribution, sales, trafficking, and usage of hard drugs in Nigeria.

This security outfit was established in 1990, based on Decree number 48, as enacted by the Federal Republic of Nigeria. 

The NDLEA officials are usually found at international and state borders, airports, highways, and seaports. Sometimes, they are found on regular roads carrying out random searches based on tip-offs.

The NDLEA, as a security agency in Nigeria, also tries to eradicate cannabis by destroying plantations found within the borders of the country.

The security agency has its head office in Ikoyi, Lagos State.

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Activities, Functions, and Duties of the NDLEA

Some of the duties of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) include;

  • Eliminating the growing, processing, manufacturing, selling, exporting, distribution, sales, trafficking, and usage of hard drugs in Nigeria.
  • Identification and destruction of farms where cannabis, marijuana, and other illicit substances are cultivated.
  • The arrest and prosecution of cartel leaders or drug barons.
  • Sensitization of the populace as regards the dangers of drugs.
  • Rehabilitation of drug addicts.

Head of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA)

The Head of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) is called the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.

As of 2022, the chairman of NDLEA is Brigadier-General Buba Marwa (rtd), a former Lagos State military governor.

He was appointed into the position by President Muhammadu Buhari on the 16th of January, 2021. Brigadier-General Buba Marwa (Rtd) took over from Muhammad Mustapha Abdallah in 2021. Until this appointment, Buba Marwa was the Chairman of the Presidential Committee on Drug Abuse.

Who was the first Chairman of NDLEA in 1989 when it was founded?

The first chairman of NDLEA was DIG. Fidelis Oyakhilome, mni, then a Police Commissioner and former Governor of Rivers State, Nigeria.

DIG. Oyakhilome had a doctorate in law and was charged with the responsibility of becoming the security agency’s first chairman and chief executive officer.

Uniform of NDLEA

Unlike many security agencies in Nigeria, NDLEA officials can be on mufti or a military-like uniform with an inscription, ‘NDLEA’ written on it.

Their official color is red, so they’re mostly on a red cloth carrying their NDLEA inscription.

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Past and Present Chairmen (Chief Executive Officers) of National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA)

Table showing the past and present Chairmans (Chief Executive Officers) of National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA)

S/NChairman/CEOYear in Office
1DIG Fidelis Oyakhilome, mniJan 12, 1990 – Mar 10, 1991
2CP Fulani Kwajafa (Rtd)Mar 10, 1991 – Oct 25, 1993
3AIG Ba’ppa Jama’re, mniOct 25, 1993 – Feb 13, 1994
4Maj. Gen. Musa Bamaiyi, mniApr 26, 1994 – Dec 23, 1998
5AIG Ogbonnaya OnovoDec 23, 1998 – May 3, 2000
6AIG Lliya Lokadang, mniMay 3, 2000 – Sept 4, 2000
7Bello Yusuf Lafiaji, OON, OFROct 10, 2000 – Nov 24, 2005
8CP Ahmed Giade (Rtd)Nov 24, 2005 – Nov 22, 2015
9Col. Muhammed M. Abdallah (Rtd)Jan 11, 2016 – Jan 15, 2021
10Brig. Gen. Mohamed Buba Marwa (Rtd), OFRJan 15, 2021 – Present

The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS)

The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) was established as an independent customs service body in Nigeria.

The security outfit was formed in 1891 and is under the direct supervisory oversight of the Nigerian Ministry of Finance.

The Nigeria Customs Service Headquarters is at Abidjan Street, Wuse, PMB 26, Zone 3, FCT Abuja, Nigeria.

Head and Departments of the Nigeria Customs Service

The head of the Nigeria Customs Services is called the Comptroller General. Directly under the Comptroller General are six Deputy Comptroller Generals.

These Deputy Comptroller Generals oversee the affairs of the following departments;

  • Enforcement, Inspection, and Investigation
  • Tariff and Trade
  • Corporate Support Services
  • Human Resource Development
  • Modernization, Research, and Economic Relations
  • Excise, Industrial Incentives, and Free Trade Zone.

Unlike many security agencies in Nigeria, the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) board is under the minister of finance’s chairmanship and assisted by the Comptroller General.

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Functions and Duties of the Nigeria Customs Service

This Nigerian security agency is charged with the following responsibilities;

  • Collections of revenue from customs (import and export duty revenues collected from the borders).
  • Combating smuggling activities (harmful/toxic substances, contrabands).
  • To facilitate national as well as international trade.
  • To checkmate money laundering under the guise of export.
  • Checkmate the importation and exportation of guns and other weapons.
  • To oversee all forms of export.

They generally see to the implementation of government laws, as regards the maintenance of border integrity.

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Uniform of Nigeria Custom Service

If you’re wondering, ‘what is Nigeria Custom Service’s uniform’s color,’ the answer is here for you.

The color of the Nigeria Customer Service is ‘Grey’.

The security agency launched the grey uniform around 2018. The new camouflage uniform is grey with bits of other colors.

Complete List of Past and Present Heads (Comptrollers General) of Nigeria Custom Service

The present Comptroller General of Nigeria Custom Service is Col. Hameed Ali (Rtd).

Below is a list of all the past and present heads (Comptrollers General) of Nigeria Custom Service.

S/NNamePositionYear Active
1T. A. Wall  Director Gen. of Customs, Niger Coast Protectorate.1891 – 1900
2H. L. Seal  Collector of Customs and Post Master Gen. Southern Nigeria.1900 – 1903
3G. E. H. MigeodCustoms Officer Northern Nigeria.  1903 – 1906
4C. E. Dale  Financial Commissioner Southern Nigeria.1906 – 1909
5T. F BurrouesComptroller of Customs. Southern Nigeria.  1909 – 1914
6T. F BurrouesComptroller of Customs. Colony and Protectorate of Nigeria.  1914 – 1921
7J. D. M StewartComptroller of Customs. Southern Nigeria.1921 – 1922
8F. A. ClinchComptroller of Customs & Excise Federation of Nigeria.1922 – 1929
9W. K. DancombeComptroller of Customs, Colony and Protectorate of Nigeria.1929 – 1931
10E. C. F Bird  Comptroller of Customs & Excise Federation of  Nigeria.1931 – 1939
11A. E. V Barton  Comptroller of Customs. Colony and Protectorate of Nigeria.1939 -1944
12J. Mclaggan  Comptroller of Customs. Colony and Protectorate Nigeria.1944 – 1946
13W. T. Martin  Comptroller of Customs. Colony and Protectorate Nigeria.1946 – 1950
14F. BishopComptroller of Customs. Southern Nigeria.1950 – 1954
15F. Bishop  Comptroller of Customs. Southern Nigeria.1954 – 1955
16D. W. Miller  Comptroller of Customs and Excise Federation of Nigeria.1955 – 1958
17E. P. C. Langdon  Comptroller of Customs and Excise Federation of Nigeria.1958 – 1959
18E. P. C. LangdonChairman Board of Customs & Excise Federation of Nigeria.1959 – 1961
19S. G. Quiton  Chairman Board of Customs & Excise Federation Of Nigeria.1961 – 1964
20A. Diyan  Chairman Board of Customs & Excise Federation of Nigeria.1964 – 1968
21H. E. Duke  Chairman Board of Customs & Excise Federation of Nigeria.1968 – 1975
22S. A. Musa  Director, Dept. of Customs & Excise, Federal Rep. of Nigeria and Chairman Board of Customs and Excise.1975 – 1976
23Oyebode Oyeleye  Director, Dept. of Customs & Excise, Federal Rep. of Nigeria and Chairman Board of Customs and Excise.1976 – 1982
24Abubakar Musa  Director, Dept. of Customs & Excise, Federal Rep. of Nigeria and Chairman Board of Customs and Excise.1982 – 1988
25Dr. Bello H. Mohammed  Director, Dept. of Customs & Excise, Federal Rep. of Nigeria.1988 – 1993
26Major – Gen.  S. O. G. AngoSole Administrator1993 – 1999
27A. A. Mustapha

Customs Comptroller-General. August 2015; Col. Hameed Ibrahim Ali (Rtd) – Customs Comptroller-General1999 – 2003
28D. A OgungbemileAg. Comptroller-General2003 – 2004  
29Jacob Gyang Buba  Comptroller-General2004 – May 2008
30Hamman Bello  Comptroller-GeneralMay 2008 – Jan 2009
31Bernard Shaw NwadialoComptroller-GeneralJan 2009 – Aug 2009
32Abdullahi Dikko  Comptroller-General2009 – 2015
33Col. Hameed Ali (Rtd)  Comptroller-General2015 – Present

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The Nigeria Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC)

The Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) is a paramilitary outfit, established based on Decree number 45 of Nigeria’s 1988 constitution. The security agency is a Federal law enforcement agency with the motto; “Creating a Safe Motoring Environment in Nigeria.” 

Their legal jurisdiction is Road Safety and Motor Vehicle Administration and they operate in all states in Nigeria and the FCT and are in charge of road safety administration and management.

The national headquarters if the FRSC is No. 3. Mapulo Street, Zone 3, Wuse, Abuja, Nigeria.

Duties and Functions of the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC)

The functions of the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) include;

  • To see the reduction of accidents on the highway
  • To speedily remove obstructions on any of the roads
  • Give speedy assistance to accident victims on the roads
  • To maintain the safety of the roads
  • To checkmate and educate drivers
  • The institution and strict adherence to speed limit
  • Enforce compliance with all road regulations
  • Conducting research on what causes accidents and developing ways to prevent them
  • Standardization of highway traffic codes
  • Clearing obstructions on any part of the highways
  • Generally, they’re in charge of everything regarding road and safety maintenance and management in Nigeria.

Current Head (Corps Marshal) of the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC)

The current head of the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) as of 2022 is Corps Marshal Boboye O, Oyeyemi MFR, mni.

The Corps Marshal is the highest rank in the Corps ranking system.

Past Heads (Corps Marshal) of the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC)

Table Showing The Past Corps Marshal of the FRSC

S/NCorps MarshalDuration
1Dr. Olu Agunloye1988 -1994 
2Maj. Gen Haldu Anthony Hananiya, mni (rtd)1994 – 1999
3Danyaro Ali Yakasai1999 – 2000
4Engr. Abba Kyari Wakilbe, OON, FNSE2000 – 2003
5Maj. Gen Haldu Anthony Hananiya, mni (rtd)2003 – 2007
6Osita Chidoka, OFR, NPoM2007 – 2014

Past and Present Chairmen of the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC)

Mallam Bukhari Bello is the current board chairman of the FRSC as of 2022.

Table showing the past and present FRSC board chairmen

S/NChairmanDuration
1Prof. Wole Soyinka1988 – 1992
2Vice Admiral Akin Aduwo (rtd)1992 – 1994
3Alh. Adamu Maina Waziri (Amb)2005 – 2006
4Greg Mbadiwe 2007 – 2008
5Col. Lawan Gwadabe (rtd)2009 – 2013
6Mr. Felix Chukwu2013 – 2015
7Mallam Bukhari Bello2015 – Present

Uniform of the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC)

The uniform of the FRSC is a brown-on-black outfit with an oxblood cap. The uniform can also be an oxblood on a black outfit. It all depends on the rank of the FRSC official.

What is the difference between the Federal Road Safety Corps and the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC)

There is little to no difference. The Corps is the operational tool of the Commission. The Commission used the Corps to enforce and execute its policies across the country.

The Corps is the ‘Federal Road Safety’ staff members that you find on the road that are either in a uniform or sometimes not on uniforms. They perform the road traffic and safety duties assigned to them by the commission.

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The Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS)

The Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) is one of the security agencies in Nigeria. The agency was extracted from the Nigeria Police in August 1958 to stand as an agency of its own.

The initial law regulating Immigration Duties in Nigeria was the Immigration Act of 1963. This law was amended in 2014 and 2015 with the 2015 amendment being called the Immigration Act, 2015.

Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) Headquarters Office

The national headquarters of the Nigeria Immigration Service is NIS HQ Shehu Shagari Complex, Airport Road, Sauka, Abuja, FCT Nigeria.

Duties and Functions of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS)

The functions of this agency include;

  • To control all forms of migration from the country.
  • To regulate the entrance of people into the country.
  • Issuance of resident permit to foreigners
  • To checkmate and prosecute people caught in illegal entrance into the country.
  • Issuance of travel documents (regional and international passports, visa)
  • Border surveillance
  • General migration management

The personnel of this security agency is trained to combat any form of threat to the nation’s territorial integrity and individuals with forged or expired travel documents.

Head of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS)

The Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) is under the leadership of the Comptroller General, the head of the agency.

Past and Current Comptroller General of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS)

Since its inception, the agency for security and immigration has had numerous leaders.

Alhaji Idris Isah Jere is the acting Comptroller-General Immigration Service – Ag. CGIS in 2022.

Table showing the past and present Comptrollers-General of NIS

S/NNameTitleDuration
1E. H. Harrison, EsqChief Federal Immigration Officer1962 – 1966
2J. E. Onugogu, EsqChief Federal Immigration Officer1966 – 1967
3Alayedeino, EsqChief Federal Immigration Officer1967 – 1976
4Alhaji Aliyu MuhammedDirector of Immigration1977 – 1979
5Alhaji Lawal SamboDirector of Immigration1979 -1985
6Muhammed Damulak, EsqDirector of Immigration1985 – 1990
7Alhaji Garba AbbasLast Director of Immigration, 1st Comptroller-General Immigration Service – CGIS1990 – 1995
8Alhaji Sahabi AbubakarComptroller-General Immigration Service – CGIS1995 – 1999
9Alhaji U. K. UmarActing Comptroller-General Immigration Service – Ag. CGIS1999 – 2000
10Lady U. C. NwizuComptroller-General Immigration Service – CGIS2000 – 2004
11Mr. Chukwurah Joseph UdehComptroller-General Immigration Service – CGIS2005 – 2010
12Mrs. Rose Chinyere UzomaComptroller-General Immigration Service – CGIS2010 – 2013
13Rilwan Bala Musa, mniActing Comptroller-General Immigration Service – Ag. CGIS2013
14David Shikfu Parradang, mniComptroller-General Immigration Service – CGIS2013 – 2015
15Martin Kure AbeshiComptroller-General Immigration Service – CGIS2015 – 2016
16Muhammed Babandede, MFRComptroller-General Immigration Service – CGIS2016 – 2021
17Alhaji Idris Isah JereAg. Comptroller-General Immigration Service – CGIS2021 – Date

Uniform of the Nigeria Immigration Service

The official uniform of the Nigeria Immigration Service is a brown shirt on a brown trouser outfit with a dark brown cap.

The Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC)

The Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) is one of the various paramilitary security agencies in Nigeria. The agency was established in May 1967 at the inception of the Nigerian civil war.

At that time, they saw to the sensitization, rescue, and protection of citizens, at the then nation’s capital, Lagos.

The act that established the institution was amended in 2007, and now the agency is commissioned to provide measures against threats, attacks, and disasters against the country and its citizens.

Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) Office Headquarters

The Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) national headquarters is beside the Nigerian Immigration Service HQ at Nnamdi Azikiwe Airport Road, Garki, Abuja FCT Nigeria.

Duties and Functions of the Civil Defence Corps in Nigeria

Some of the functions of the NSCDC include;

  • Maintenance of peace and order
  • Protection of lives during moments of emergency like war and protests
  • Combating the vandalism of government properties, including oil rigs, power cables, transformers, etc
  • Education of the society on the necessary safety measures for daily survival and moments of emergency or unrest
  • Arrest and prosecution of defaulting members of the public (oil bunkers, buglers, vandals, and bandits)
  • Protection of government-owned properties and sometimes personnel

Who is the Head of Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps?

The head of the NSCDC is called the Commandant General.

As of 2022, the Commandant General of the NSCDC was Ahmed Abubakar Audi.

Past and Present Directors General of the NSCDC since Reformation in 2003

S/NDirector-GeneralDuration
1Abiola Atunramu (Ag)2004 – 2005
2Dr Adeqale john Abolurin OFR, PSC+2005 – 2015
3Abdullahi Gana Muhammadu2015 – 2020
4Dr. Ahmed Abubakar Audi PhD mni2021 – Date

What is the NSCDC Uniform Color?

The Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps uniform is a navy blue outfit with a black military cap.

The Nigeria Police Force (NPF)

The Nigeria Police Force (NPF) is one of the most popular and oldest security agencies in Nigeria. This is the principal law enforcement and lead security agency in Nigeria.

The security agency has a staff strength of about 371,000 with plans to increase the number to 650,000. The Nigeria Police Force (NPF) is large and consists of 36 state commands, 17 zones, and 8 administrative organs.

The first police institution in Nigeria was established in 1820. Over the following years, there was the establishment of several policing organizations across the country.

After having various policing institutions in different parts of the country, the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) was amalgamated, consolidated, and founded in 1930, with the late Mr. Louis Edet, as the first Inspector General.

The 1999 constitution designates the Force as the national police of the country. They have exclusive jurisdiction throughout the country.

Nigeria Police Force (NPF) Office Headquarters

The Nigerian Police Force (NPF) national headquarters is the Louis Edet House, Abuja FCT, Nigeria.

Duties and Functions of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF)

  • Enforcement of law and order
  • Prosecution of defaulters, armed robbers, or buglers
  • Investigation of criminal cases
  • To safeguard banks, government properties, as well as other buildings of note.
  • To safeguard government functionaries, expatriates, and other individuals on national assignment.

The Police are definitely your friend if you adhere to the law. If you don’t, then you might not be able to call them your friend. The Nigeria Police also occasionally perform some military functions of peace-keeping during moments of societal unrest.

Head (Leadership) of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF)

The Nigeria Police Force (NPF) is headed by the Inspector General of Police (IGP) appointed by the country’s president. The Inspector General is supported by Deputy Inspectors General (DIGs) and Commissioners.

Besides being the most senior police officer, the IGP is the police officer with the highest salary.

Past and Present Inspectors General of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF)

The highest rank in the Nigerian Police Force (NPF) is Inspector General of Police (IGP). The Inspector General also doubles as the head of the Nigeria Police Force.

Below is a table list of past and present Inspectors-General of Police and the period they served in the position;

S/NInspector-General of PoliceDuration
1IGP Louis Edet1964 – 1966
2IGP Kam Salem1966 – 1975
3IGP Muhammadu Dikko Yusufu1975 – 1979
4IGP Adamu Suleiman1979 – 1981
5IGP Sunday Adewusi1981 – 1983
6IGP Etim Inyang1985 – 1986
7IGP Muhammadu Gambo-Jimeta1986 – 1990
8IGP Aliyu Atta1990 – 1993
9IGP Ibrahim Coomassie1993 – 1999
10IGP Musiliu Smith1999 – 2002
11IGP Mustafa Adebayo Balogun2002 – 2005
12IGP Sunday Ehindero2005 – 2007
13IGP Mike Mbama Okiro2007 – 2009
14IGP Ogbonna Okechukwu Onovo2009 – 2010
15IGP Hafiz Ringim2010 – 2012
16IGP Mohammed Dikko Abubarkar2012 – 2014
17IGP Suleiman Abba2014 – 2015
18IGP Solomon E. Arase2015 – 2016
19IGP Ibrahim Idris Kpotum (Acting)2016 – 2019  
20IGP Adamu Mohammed2019 – 2021
21IGP Usman Alkali Baba2021 – Date

Who is the Inspector General of Police in 2022?

The Inspector-General of Police in 2022 is IGP Usman Alkali Baba.

Who is the first Inspector General of Police?

The first Inspector General of Police is IGP Louis Edet.

Uniform of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF)

The Nigeria Police Force (NPF) officers wear a black on black outfit with a black cap. They are commonly called the “men in black” due to their black-on-black attire.

However, the mobile police, an arm of the Nigerian Police Force (NPF), have their officers appear in a black on green outfit.

Related: 17 Current Problems of Education in Nigeria & Possible Solutions

The Nigerian Armed Forces

The Nigerian Armed Forces are the armed forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. It is a combination of all armed security outfits in the country with its principal components being;

  • The Nigerian Army (NA)
  • The Nigerian Air Force (NAF)
  • The Nigerian Navy·   

Nigerian Armed Forces Office Headquarters

The Nigerian Armed Forces have their headquarters in Abuja, just like many other security agencies in Nigeria.

Functions of the Nigerian Armed Forces

The general functions of the Nigerian Armed Forces, including the Nigerian Army, Air Force, and Navy are;

  • To follow and uphold the Nigerian Constitution.
  • Defending the country from external and internal aggression.
  • Maintaining the territorial integrity of Nigeria.
  • Securing Nigerian borders from violations on the land, sea, and/or air.
  • Restoration of order in and out of the country.

The Nigerian Army (NA)

The Nigerian Army (NA) is a part and the largest component of the Armed Forces of Nigeria and is responsible for land warfare operations.

This security outfit is governed by the Nigerian Army Council (NAC) and is popular amongst the securities agencies in Nigeria. The NA is charged with the responsibility of safeguarding the nation’s territories and fighting in times of war. They are also deployed during civil unrest moments just as they are sometimes sent on peacekeeping missions outside the country.

Functions of the Nigerian Army

The functions of the Nigerian Army include;

  • To follow and uphold the Nigerian Constitution.
  • Defending the country from external and internal aggression.
  • Maintaining the territorial integrity of Nigeria.
  • Securing Nigerian borders from violations on land.
  • Restoration of peace and order in and out of the country.
Uniform of the Nigerian Army

The Nigerian Army soldiers appear in green camouflage uniforms.

Head of the Nigerian Army

The head of the Nigerian Army is called the Chief of Army Staff (COAS).

Lt Gen Farouk Yahaya is the Nigerian Chief of Army Staff as of 2022. He entered office in May, 2021

List of Past and Present Chiefs of the Nigerian Army from 1956 to Date.
S/NChief of Army Staff (COAS)Duration
1Maj Gen Kenneth G. Exham (GOC)1956–1959
2Maj Gen Norman Foster (GOC)1960–1962
3Maj Gen John Alexander Mackenzie (GOC)1963
4Maj Gen Sir Christopher Welby-Everard (GOC) 1963–1965
5Maj Gen Johnson Aguiyi-Ironsi (GOC)1965–1966
6Lt Col Yakubu Gowon FSS       (COAS)Jan 1966 – Jul 1966
7Lt Col Joseph Akahan OFR FSS (COAS)May 1967 – May 1968
8Maj Gen Hassan Katsina rcds psc (COAS) May 1968 – Jan 1971 
9Maj Gen David Ejoor (COAS) Jan 1971 – Jul 1975 
10Lt Gen Theophilus Danjuma (COAS)Jul 1975 – Oct 1979
11Lt Gen Ipoola Alani Akinrinade CFR FSS (COAS)Oct 1979 – Apr 1980 
12Lt Gen Gibson Jalo CFR FSS JSS  (COAS)Apr 1980 – Oct 1981
13Lt Gen Mohammed Inuwa Wushishi CFR FSS (COAS)Oct 1981 – Oct 1983
14Maj Gen Ibrahim Babangida (COAS) Jan 1984 – Aug 1985
15Lt Gen Sani Abacha GCON, DSS mni (COAS) Aug 1985 – Aug 1990
16Lt Gen Salihu Ibrahim FSS FHWC       (COAS)Aug 1990 – Sep 1993
17Lt Gen Aliyu Gusau Mohammed DSS rcds (COAS)Sept 1993 – Nov 1993
18Maj Gen Chris Alli CRG DSS ndc psc(+)  (COAS)Nov 1993 – Aug 1994
19Maj Gen Alwali Kazir DSS Usawc psc(+) (COAS)Aug 1994 – Mar 1996
20Lt Gen Ishaya Bamaiyi DSS Usawc psc(+) (COAS)Mar 1996 – May 1999
21Lt Gen Victor Malu DSS mni fwc psc (COAS) May 1999 – April 2001
22Lt Gen Alexander Ogomudia (COAS)April 2001 – Jun 2003
23Lt Gen Martin Luther Agwai (COAS)Jun 2003 – Jun 2006
24Lt Gen Owoye Andrew Azazi (COAS)1 Jun 2006 – May 2007
25Lt Gen Luka Yusuf (COAS)Jun 2007 – Aug 2008 
26Lt Gen Abdulrahman Bello Dambazau (COAS) Aug 2008 – Sept 2010 
27Lt Gen Onyabor Azubuike Ihejirika (COAS)Sept 2010 – Jan 2014
28Lt Gen Kenneth Minimah (COAS) Jan 2014 – Jul 2015 
29Lt Gen Tukur Yusuf Buratai (COAS)Jul 2015 – Jan 2021
30Major-General Ibrahim Attahiru (COAS)Jan 2021 – May 2021
31Lt Gen Farouk Yahaya (COAS)May 2021 – Date
Longest Serving Nigeria’s Chief of Army Staff

Lt Gen Tukur Yusuf Buratai is the current longest-serving Nigeria Chief of Army Staff.

The Borno-born highly ranked military personnel spent a total of 66 months (Jul 2015 – Jan 2021) as the nation’s top army chief beating Lt Gen Sani Abacha’s record of 60 months (Aug 1985 – Aug 1990).

The Nigerian Air Force (NAF)

This is another security outfit in Nigeria that is under the Nigerian Armed Forces. They work together with the Nigeria Army and the Nigeria Navy under the umbrella of the NIgerian Armed Forces..

They are charged with the duty of defending the country by air and is amongst the most massive air forces in Africa with about 15,000 personnel.

The Nigerian Air Force was formally established on 18th April 1964 with the passage of the Air Force Act 1964 by the Nigerian National Assembly.

Functions of the Nigerian Air Force

The functions of the Nigerian Air Force include;

  • To follow and uphold the Nigerian Constitution.
  • Defending the country from external and internal air aggression.
  • Maintaining the territorial integrity of Nigeria.
  • Securing Nigerian borders from violations on air.
  • Restoration of order in and out of the country.
  • Close Air Support.
  • Maritime Air Operations
  • Air Transport Operations
Uniform of the Nigerian Air Force (NAF)

The Nigerian Air Force uniform color is dark blue uniforms for parades, and the combat uniform for pilots is green khaki color.

Head of the Nigerian Air Force (NAF)

The head of the Nigerian Air Force is called the Chief of the Air Staff (CAS).

Air Marshal Isiaka Oladayo Amao is the Nigerian Chief of the Air Staff (CAS) in 2022.

Past and Present Chiefs of the Nigerian Air Force

Below is a list of Chiefs of the Nigerian Air Force to date;

S/NChief of the Air StaffDuration
1Colonel Gerhard Kahtz5 May 1963 – 11 Nov 1965
2Colonel Wolfgang Thimmig24 Nov 1965 – 18 Jan 1966
3Lieutenant Colonel George T. Kurubo19 Jan 1966 – 4 Aug 1967
4Colonel Shittu Alao5 Aug 1967 – 15 Oct 1969
5Brigadier Emmanuel E Ikwue 18 Dec 1969 – 28 Jul 1975
6Air Vice-Marshal John Nmadu Yisa-Doko29 Jul 1975 – 14 Apr 1980
7Air Vice-Marshal Abdullahi Dominic Bello14 Apr 1980 – 31 Dec 1983
8Air Marshal Ibrahim Mahmud Alfa1 Jan 1984 – 1 Jan 1990
9Air Vice-Marshal Nuraini Yussuff2 Jan 1990 – 30 Jan 1992
10Air Marshal Akin Dada1 Feb 1992 – 16 Sep 1992
11Air Vice-Marshal Femi John Femi 17 Sep 1992 – 29 Mar 1996
12Air Marshal Nsikak-Abasi Essien Eduok30 Mar 1996 – 29 May 1999
13Air Marshal Isaac Alfa29 May 1999 – 23 Apr 2001
14Air Marshal Jonah Wuyep24 Apr 2001 – 31 May 2006
15Air Marshal Paul Dike1 Jun 2006 – 19 Aug 2008
16Air Marshal Oluseyi Petinrin20 Aug 2008 – 18 Sep 2010
17Air Marshal Mohammed Dikko Umar19 Sep 2010 – 3 Oct 2012
18Air Marshal Alex Sabundu Badeh 4 Oct 2012 – 15 Jan 2014
19Air Marshal Adesola Nunayon Amosu16 Jan 2014 – 12 Jul 2015
20Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar13 Jul 2015 ­- 26 Jan 2021
21Air Marshal Isiaka Oladayo Amao27 Jan 2021 – Date

The Nigerian Navy (NN)

The Nigerian Navy is another security agency under the Nigerian Armed Forces. The Nigerian Navy is amongst the largest navies in Africa had has several thousand personnel, including Coast Guards.

The NN protects the nation’s water by stiffly combating any form of threat from the water.

Nigerian Navy (NN) has three operational commands located in;

  • Bayelsa (Yenagoa)
  • Cross River (Calabar) and
  • Lagos (Apapa)
History of The Nigeria Navy

The history of the Nigerian Navy can be traced back to the Nigerian Marines, which was formed in 1914 after The Amalgamation. The Nigerian Marine gave way to new organizations like the Nigerian Ports Authority, Inland Waterways Department, and the Nigerian Naval Force.

In 1959, the Nigerian Naval Force was transformed into a full-fledged Navy (Royal Nigerian Navy). The name was officially changed to the Nigerian Navy in 1963 after the country became a republic.

The Armed Forces Act of the 1999 Constitution gave the Nigerian Navy expanded military and constabulary roles, making it what it is today.

Functions of the Nigerian Navy (NN)

The functions of the Nigerian Navy include;

  • To follow and uphold the Nigerian Constitution.
  • Defending the country from external and internal naval aggression.
  • Maintaining the naval territory integrity of Nigeria.
  • Securing Nigerian naval borders from violations.
  • Enforcing and assisting in coordinating the enforcement of all customs.
  • Upholding immigration laws
  • Fighting against bunkering
  • Fishery Protection and Upholding Environmental and Pollution Laws
  • Enforcement of all national and international maritime laws.
Uniform of the Nigerian Navy (NN)

When it comes to the Nigerian Navy uniform color, they use a white uniform for ceremonial outings and wear green khaki camouflage color other times.

Head of the Nigerian Navy (NN)

The head of the Nigerian Navy (NN) is called the Chief of Naval Staff (CNS).

The CNS is the highest-ranking military officer of the Nigerian Navy and is often occupied by the most senior commissioned officer appointed by the president.

Rear Admiral Awwal Zubairu Gambo is the Nigerian Chief of Naval Staff (CNS) in 2022.

Past and Present Nigerian Chiefs of Naval Staff

Below is a list of Chiefs of Naval Staff to date;

S/NNigerian Chief of Naval StaffDuration
1Captain F.W. Skutil       1956 – 1958
2Commodore A.R. Kennedy1958 – 1964
3Vice Commodore J.E.A. Wey OFR FSS1964 – 1973
4Vice Admiral N.B. Soroh MFR FSS IDC1973 – 1975
5Vice Admiral M.A Adelanwa GCON FSS rcds 1975 – 1980
6Vice Admiral A.A. Aduwo CFR FSS FBIM1980 – 1983
7Rear Admiral A.A. Aikhomu FSS psc mni1984 – 1986
8Vice-Admiral Patrick Koshoni FSS psc mni 1986 – 1990
9Vice Admiral Murtala Nyako FSS psc mni   1990 – 1992
10Vice Admiral D.P.E Omotsola FSS DSO psc rcds1992 – 1993
11Rear Admiral S. Sa’idu FSS LSS MSS DSS rcds1993 
12Rear Admiral A.A. Madueke FSS DSS MRNI mni1993 – 1994
13Rear Admiral O.M Akhigbe FSS DSS psc mni 1994 – 1998
14Vice Admiral J. Ayinla DSS psc Usnwc fwc GCON1998 – 1999
15Vice Admiral V.K. Ombu CFR mni 1999 – 2001
16Vice Admiral S.O. Afolayan DSS psc fwc2001 – 2005
17Vice Admiral G.T.A. Adekeye DSS psc mirss mni2005 – 2008
18Vice Vice Admiral O.S. Ibrahim DSS psc rcds fwc LLB (Hons) MA2008 – 2010
19Admiral I.I. Ibrahim CFR DSS psc fwc2010 – 2012
20Vice Admiral D.J. Ezeoba GSS fwc Msc MRIN FCIS2012 – 2013
21Vice Admiral U.O. Jibrin GSS AM psc+ mni LLB PGCPA2013 – 2015
22Vice Admiral Ibok-Ete Ekwe Ibas2015 – 2021
23Rear Admiral Awwal Zubairu Gambo2021 – Present

Joint Task Force (JTF) – Another Branch of the Nigerian Armed Forces

Besides the NA, NAF, and NN, there is another component of the Nigerian Armed Forces – the Joint Task Force (JTF) in the Niger Delta.

The JTF is an inter-service operational team that has members from each branch of the Nigerian Armed Forces.

Functions of the Joint Task Force

The function of the Joint Task Force is to maintain peace and hope in the Niger Delta.

Office Address Headquarters of the Joint Task Force

JTF headquarters is in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State.

Head of the Nigerian Armed Forces

The head of the Nigerian Armed Forces is the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS).

The CDS is the highest-ranking military officer in Nigeria, and the position is usually occupied by the most senior commissioned officer appointed by the president.

The post was established under Nigeria’s 1979 constitution to be the chairman, ‘the Joint Chiefs of Staff.’ He is assisted by the Chiefs of Staff of the Army, Air Force, and Navy.

Present Chief of the Defense Staff

General Lucky Eluonye Onyenuchea Irabor is the Chief of Defence Staff in 2022.

List of Past and Present Nigeria Chiefs of Defence Staff
S/NChief of the Defense StaffDuration
1Lt. General Ipoola Alani Akinrinade1980 – 1981
2Lt. General Gibson Jalo1981 – 1983
3General Domkat Bali1984 – 1990
4General Sani Abacha1990 – 1993
5Lt. General Oladipo Diya1993 – 1997
6General Abdulsalami Abubakar1997 – 1998
7Air Marshal Al-Amin Daggash1998 – 1999
8Admiral Ibrahim Ogohi1999 – 2003
9General Alexander OgomudiaJun 2003 – Jun 2006
10General Martin Luther AgwaiJun 2006 – May 25, 2007
11General Owoye Andrew AzaziMay 25, 2007 – Aug 20, 2008
12Air Chief Marshal Paul DikeAug 20, 2008 – Sep 8, 2010
13Air Chief Marshal Oluseyi PetinrinSep 8, 2010 – Oct 5, 2012
14Admiral Ola IbrahimOct 5, 2012 – Jan 16, 2014
15Air Chief Marshal Alex Sabundu BadehJan 16, 2014 – Jul 13, 2015
16Major General Abayomi Gabriel Olonisakin  July 13, 2015 – Jan 26, 2021
17Major General Lucky IraborJan 27, 2021 – Present

The National Intelligence Agency (NIA)

The National Intelligence Agency (NIA) is one of the cardinal security agencies in Nigeria. This agency came into existence following the dissolution of the National Security Organization (NSO). The agency, along with the State Security Service (SSS) and Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), is under the National Security Adviser’s watch.

The National Intelligence Agency (NIA) is tasked with overseeing foreign intelligence and counterintelligence operations in Nigeria. Their duty is similar to that of the USA’s CIA, UK’s MI6, and Israel’s Mossad.

The staff is highly skilled, intelligent, and discreet and has a manifest to preserve the country’s eminence, pride, and dignity.

Functions of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA)

  • To oversee foreign intelligence and counterintelligence operations.
  • To preserve the eminence, pride, and dignity of the country.
  • To repossess and intercept secret information that is capable of imperiling Nigeria’s national interest.
  • To prevent the breach of National security.

Head of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA)

The head of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA) is called the Director-General.

Ahmed Rufai Abubakar is the current Director-General of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA) in 2022.

List of Past and Present Directors General of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA)

S/NDirector GeneralDuration
1Chief Albert K. Horsfall1986–1990
2Brigadier-General Haliru Akilu (Rtd)1990–1993
3Ambassador Zakari Y. Ibrahim1993–1998
4Ambassador Godfrey B. Preware1998–1999
5Ambassador Uche O. Okeke1999–2007
6Ambassador Emmanuel E. Imohe2007–2009 (Sept 2009)
7Ambassador Olaniyi Oladeji 2009–2013 (Oct 2013)
8Ambassador Ayo Oke2013–2017 (Oct 2017)
9Ahmed Rufai Abubakar2018–Till-date

The Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA)

This security agency was founded in 1986 and has the responsibility of overseeing the nation’s military intelligence. They gather military intelligence for the Ministry of Defense and Nigerian Armed Forces.

It is the primary military intelligence agency of Nigeria.

Functions of the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA)

The functions of the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) include;

  • To enhance military cooperation with other countries
  • To see to the promotion of the nation’s Defense Policy.
  • To maintain territorial integrity.
  • Protects the lives of Nigerian citizens.

Head of the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA)

The Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) is headed by the Chief of Defense Intelligence (CDI) appointed by the President of the country.

Major General Samuel Adebayo is the present Chief of Defense Intelligence (CDIs) of the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) in 2022.

List of Past and Present Chief of Defense Intelligence (CDIs) of the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA)

S/NChief of Defense IntelligenceDuration
1Brigadier General A.G. MohammedJanuary 1985 – August 1985
2Lt Colonel Haliru AkiluAugust 1985 – July 1986
3Rear Admiral Babatunde ElegbedeJuly 1986 – January 1990
4Colonel Haliru AkiluJanuary 1990 – Sept 1990
5Group Captain Idi MusaSept 1990 – December 1991
6Major General Ibrahim Dahiru GumelDec 1991 – March 1995
7Air Vice-Marshal Idi MusaMarch 1995 – July 1999
8Vice Admiral J.M. AjayiJuly 1999 – September 2005
9Major General A.M. Halidu-GiwaDec 2005 – August 2007
10Major General Mohammed SaidAugust 2007 – July 2009
11Major General Babagana MongunoJuly 2009 – September 2011
12Major General S.Y. AuduSept 2011 – February 2014
13Rear Admiral Gabriel OkoiFebruary 2014 – July 2015
14Air Vice-Marshal Monday Riku MorganJuly 2015 – January 2016
15Major General John Saduana FranklinJanuary 2016 – July 2016
16Air Vice-Marshal MS UsmanJuly 2016 – February 2021
17Major General Samuel AdebayoFebruary 2021 – Present

Final Words on the Security Agencies in Nigeria

Globally, the maintenance of security remains an increasing concern of every government. Just as insecurity is on the increase in various parts of the world, so it is in Nigeria. Nigeria, as the Giant of Africa, is doing everything possible to maintain security in the country. This article highlights all the security agencies in Nigeria, helping the country achieve peace and normalcy.

What’s your view? Which of these Nigerian security agencies have you heard or haven’t heard of?

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