PERCEPTION OF CRIMINALITY AND SOCIO-CULTURAL ENVIRONMENT IN ENUGU STATE, NIGERIA
Criminality, a destructive phenomenon, is deeply rooted in Nigeria. The increasing incidences of this Cankerworm stars us on the faces daily. Our radios, televisions and newspapers churn out blood chilling stories of armed robbery attacks, kidnapping, human sacrifices, embezzlement of public funds, etc daily. Our prevention and control agencies have been over burdened by the monstrous situation that they offer little or no solution to it. Consequent upon the above hopeless condition, the general public live in perpetual fear of the safety of their lives and property. The pertinent question that arises, becomes the cause(s) of crimes and criminality. Social scientist offered different answers to the above question. To some, it was biological; to others, it was psychological, and still to others it was sociological. It is on this basis that the study seeks to identify the perception of people on criminality and socio-cultural environment in Enugu State, Nigeria. The research was conducted in Enugu East and Enugu North senatorial zones headquarters that constitute the city centres of the state.
The results of the research questions and hypotheses put forward revealed that the people perceived the socio-cultural environments as the principal causes of criminality in Enugu State. These socio-cultural factors included, the culture of get-rich-quick syndrome peer group influence, educational background, the culture of adulation of richness unemployment, etc. These factors contributed in their own unique ways to criminality in Enugu State. On the basis of these findings, it was recommended that government should declare a state of emergency on unemployment; wealthy individuals of questionable sources of wealth should be rejected and disdained; assets of well-known criminals and embezzlers should be confiscated by the government and citizens should avoid the company of criminals.
The study was divided into five chapters. Chapter one, the introduction, took an over view of the topic. Chapter two reviewed and analysed the existing relevant literature on the topic. Chapter three dealt with the methodology employed in the research. The fourth chapter analysed our research findings, while the concluding chapter five concluded the study and offered some useful recommendations.