Ndume makes false claim about Nigeria’s military strength


THE Nigerian Senate Majority Chief Whip, Ali Ndume, has claimed that Nigeria has only 200,000 armed forces personnel across the country.

Ndume stated this on January 23, 2024 while speaking on the country’s security situation during an interview on Channels TV’s programme, Politics Today.

Senator Ndume lamented the deficit manpower in the Nigerian security forces and called on the Nigerian government to recruit more personnel especially into the Nigerian Army and the Nigeria Police Force (NPF).

He said: “We don’t have the number. We only have two hundred thousand Nigerian armed forces. We only have I think less than four hundred thousand police. Put together, we don’t have up to a million of them.”

The Nigerian Armed Forces is the military force of Nigeria, responsible for safeguarding the country’s sovereignty and maintaining internal and external security. It encompasses the Nigerian Army, Nigerian Navy, and Nigerian Air Force.

Established in 1960, they play a crucial role in national defence, peacekeeping operations, and disaster response within the nation.



Nigeria has only 200,000 armed forces personnel.



Checks by The FactCheckHub show that the claim is FALSE.

Data obtained from the Global Fire Power (GFP) website which was last updated on January 9, 2024, show that Nigeria has an estimated total military personnel of 280,000 while the number of active military personnel stood at 230,000. These are higher than the figure quoted by Senator Ndume.

The Global Fire Power (GFP) is an organisation which ranks every country’s military capacities annually based on factors such as the number of serving military members – the naval, and air force and fuel availability for military operations, the number of jet fighters, the defence budget, and logistic flexibility.

According to the GFP, the ranking is based on each nation’s potential war-making capability across land, sea and air fought by conventional means.

The results incorporate values related to manpower, equipment, natural resources, finances and geography, with more than 60 individual factors used to calculate the final ranking.



The claim that Nigeria has only 200,000 armed forces personnel is FALSE; the latest data by Global Fire Power show that the Armed Forces of Nigeria has an estimated 280,000 personnel with 230,000 of them in active service.

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Nurudeen Akewushola is a fact-checker with FactCheckHub. He has authored several fact checks which have contributed to the fight against information disorder. You can reach him via [email protected] and @NurudeenAkewus1 via Twitter.


  1. I said Nigeria has about 200,000 soldiers and I agree that we have about 230,000 active soldiers. Is that not about 200t or will you say they are about 300t. Any way do you think 230 or 280 armed forces are enough to address the security challenges we have in a country with more than 200m population?

  2. I would like to say Nigeria needs to get it together it is painful knowing we have so much potential but it is not being realized Nigeria needs to become the strongest on the African continent with such a large young population and the correct reforms to the economy we can reach an economic of 1trillion we need to get serious or the African continent would continue to be overran by the likes of the western (nato nations) and eastern (China and Russia) militaries our military shouldn’t handle policing we need a well trained police force each region needs its very own police force and needs to be funded enough to not be corrupted the militaries only focus should be wiping out boko haram and improving the Lively hoods of those affected communities the military needs to come up with new strategies because there is a reason why boko haram is gaining more recruits that solution is none military if Nigeria improves the security problems, infrastructure, educational reform, economic reform and military reform we could be a force to be reckoned with but unfortunately that takes political will if you people can’t bring us from this then why are you there I want our nation to be rightfully amongst the great powers of today not being seen as an strategic tool either by the Americans or the Chinese let’s get it together we have that potential


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