Showing posts with label religion. Show all posts
Showing posts with label religion. Show all posts

Friday, August 12, 2011

USC Annenberg Announces Recipients of 2011 Knight Grants

12 Aug 2011 16:29 Africa/Lagos


USC Annenberg Announces Recipients of Knight Grants For Reporting on Religion and American Public Life

PR Newswire

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 12, 2011

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 12, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The USC Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism has announced the recipients of the 2011 Knight Grants for Reporting on Religion and American Public Life. Among many outstanding applications, nine projects were chosen to receive grants between $5,000 and $20,000.

"We are very excited to support reporting on topics that include the influence of William Lane Craig, one of the leading thinkers of the Christian right; post-prison life for Latino and African-American Muslim converts; and sexual teachings in 'hip' evangelical churches," said Diane Winston, Knight Chair in Media and Religion at USC Annenberg. "These projects illustrate the impact of religion on major issues facing the nation."

Knight Grants will support the following projects:
Reporter/producer Matt Ozug and writer and documentary filmmaker Julia Elliott will produce "The Sacred in the City," a website that will document how religious communities help immigrants maintain an ethnic identity while acclimating to life in New York City. Ozug is best known for his work on NPR's StoryCorps. Elliott was the co-producer of "The Old Man and the Storm," a one-hour documentary about an African American family's struggle in post-Katrina New Orleans.

More than 100,000 kids who have incarcerated parents also have a volunteer mentor through a federally funded program called Mentoring Children of Prisoners. G. Jeffrey MacDonald will report on what happens to the relationships between these children and their mentors - many of whom entered the program through faith-based organizations -- when funding expires in September. MacDonald is a senior correspondent for the Christian Science Monitor.

Christopher Johnson will produce a series of radio stories on Ifa, an ancient Nigeria-based religion, that's been adopted by an estimated 3 million black Americans. Johnson will trace Ifa's evolution in the US from secret societies founded amid the late 60s Afrocentric movements to recent public clashes among Ifa, Santeria and Lukumi practitioners that may be racially-motivated. Johnson's work has been featured on NPR's Morning Edition, Day to Day and All Things Considered.

Nicole Greenfield will examine changing attitudes on LGBT rights and marriage equality among influential urban evangelical churches - among them Revolution NYC led by "punk preacher" Jay Bakker, son of televangelists Jim and Tammy Faye. Greenfield is a freelance journalist and contributing editor for The Revealer.

Nathan Schneider will profile scholar William Lane Craig who is leading a movement to win over philosophy departments for conservative Christianity and from there, American politics and society. Schneider is an editor and journalist whose work has appeared in The New York Times, The Nation, Religion Dispatches, and Tricycle

Monique Parsons will look at the new generation of American-born, highly educated, Daily Show-watching, social media-savvy mosque-builders in the United States. Parsons is an independent producer and freelance reporter based in Chicago whose work has been featured on Beliefnet, NPR's Morning Edition and All Things Considered.

Andre Tartar, a freelance reporter for New York Magazine, will report on Brazilian Pentecostals in Queens, New York, whose churches are instrumental in their assimilation to American life.

Ann Neumann will investigate "Dying in America" with stories on the ongoing controversy surrounding "Death with Dignity" bills, prison inmates who are dying behind bars, and debates between Catholic health providers and hospital staff over end-of-life issues. Neumann has written for The Nation, AlterNet, ReligionDispatches, and KillingtheBuddha.

Conversions, primarily among African Americans but also Latinos, make Muslims the fastest-growing faith group in California prisons. Matt O'Brien will explore the faith component of their readjustment to life outside the penal system- including the challenge of finding welcoming Muslim communities. O'Brien is a regional staff writer for the Oakland Tribune.

During the nine-month period of their award, fellows will report and develop stories for delivery on multiple platforms. Several fellows will be selected to present their work at USC, hold master classes for journalism students, and give public lectures for the community.

The Knight Chair in Media and Religion, established in 2002 by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, participates in a wide range of activities, including the organization of conferences for working journalists and the sponsorship of events for the local community.

About the USC Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism

Located in Los Angeles at the University of Southern California, the USC Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism is among the nation's leading institutions devoted to the study of arts journalism and criticism. In addition to its programs for working professionals, USC Annenberg enrolls more than 2,200 students earning undergraduate and graduate degrees in journalism, communication, public diplomacy and public relations. For more information, visit http://annenberg.usc.edu.

This news release was issued on behalf of Newswise(TM). For more information, visit http://www.newswise.com.

SOURCE USC Annenberg School for Communication

CONTACT: Jillian Bailey O'Connor, USC, jbo_001@usc.edu, +1-626-644-2641

Web Site: http://annenberg.usc.edu





Monday, July 25, 2011

Nigerian Joint Military Task Force in random killing in Maiduguri



25 Jul 2011 16:18 Africa/Lagos

Nigeria security forces in random killing following bomb blast

LONDON, July 25, 2011/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- The Nigerian authorities must immediately put a stop to unlawful killings by security forces, Amnesty International said today after at least 23 people were killed by police following a bomb blast on Saturday in the north-eastern city of Maiduguri.


The bomb, allegedly set off by the Islamist group Boko Haram, went off in the Budum market in central Maiduguri and injured three soldiers. According to reports received by Amnesty International, the Nigerian Joint Military Task Force (JTF) responded by shooting and killing a number of people, apparently at random, before burning down the market.


“President Goodluck Jonathan must get a grip on the Nigerian armed forces and immediately prevent them from carrying out further human rights violations and unlawful killings,” said Tawanda Hondora, Amnesty International's Deputy Director for Africa.


“The government must now investigate these heinous crimes and put on trial those found to be responsible for the killings. Allowing troops to go on the rampage will not bring to justice those who carry out these terrible bomb attacks on civilians,” he said.


“While staying within the law, the government must step up efforts to bring to justice members of Boko Haram who wreck untold suffering on people in the middle belt.”


One wing of Boko Haram has reportedly disowned the bomb blast, saying it may have been carried out by a splinter group.


The JTF was set up by the federal government in June 2011 to restore order in Borno state. In recent months, Amnesty International has received numerous reports that security forces in Borno state have resorted to unlawful killings, dragnet arrests, arbitrary and unlawful detentions, extortion, and intimidation.


One human rights defender told Amnesty International “Soldiers went on the rampage. They shot several people and burned all their shops and properties and burned their cars.”



Following a bombing in Maiduguri two weeks ago, members of the JTF reportedly threatened to shoot residents if they failed to report planned attacks.


“House to house searches, brutalisation, unlawful arrests, killings and disappearances have been the operating practice in Maiduguri for some months now. Unless steps are taken to ensure security forces operate within the law and respect human rights at all times, the next time Boko Haram attacks or kills a soldier, we are likely to see the same thing happen again,” said Tawanda Hondora.


Thousands of people living in Maiduguri have already left the city; and many more continue to do so.


The JTF have also been accused of raping women during their operations in recent months.


“Allegations of rape of women by members of the JTF have to be investigated and perpetrators brought to justice, “Tawanda Hondora said.


“Survivors of rape and sexual violence must be provided with appropriate support and aftercare,” he added.


Since July 2010, attacks by people believed to be members of the religious sect Boko Haram have increased. More than 250 people have been killed in such attacks, many of which have targeted police officers and government officials.


Several religious leaders have been killed and churches have also been targeted.


Since June 2011, Boko Haram has also attacked bars and beer-gardens, killing scores of people.


Source: Amnesty International


Thursday, July 14, 2011

Boko Haram Terrorism Threats in Nigeria



Boko Haram Terrorism Threats in Nigeria
AK2011130700138.

ANALYSIS

Dr. Deji James, Human Rights Group: writing from Abuja, it is emphatic that the Boko Haram issue is far from being just a ‘northern’ phenomenon, but nationwide crisis.

One of the greatest challenges President Goodluck Jonathan's administration faces is the growing insecurity across the country. Nigerians are said to now be living in perpetual fear of falling victim to the spate of bombings, assassinations, kidnappings and other acts of terrorism in the country.

Boko Haram, in its fifth straight day of violence, overran a police station in Toro Council in Bauchi State and carted off arms and ammunition. Elsewhere, a heavy explosion followed by bursts of sporadic gunfire hit Maiduguri, where the Islamic fundamentalists have also been waging a campaign of terror.

The Coalition of Ethnic Nationalities of Nigeria (CENN) has said the nefarious operations of the Boko Haram sect must be considered as an act of war and terrorism in the class of a foreign invasion against the country, "and must be drastically confronted as such by the security agencies to prevent further international embarrassment to Nigeria and further loss of Nigerian lives and property".

Governor Obi of Anambra State described the actions of the Boko Haram sect which has resulted in killings of innocent Nigerians in parts of the country, as unacceptable and must be tackled.

Senator Olubunmi Adetumbi, representing Ekiti North Senatorial district of Ekiti State, has justified the recent deployment of soldiers to Abuja to combat the menace of terrorism by Boko Haram, describing the move as a sure way to curtail the activities of the terrorist group. He assured Nigerians that members of the National Assembly will open debate on the matter after recess, saying the issue of terrorism in the country has reached a feverish pitch and needed utmost urgent attention.

Boko Haram has announced its Jihad in Nigeria and its intent on causing further mayhem until its goals of setting up a nation under Sharia is met. For many Nigerians, this is a serious threat, and must be taken very seriously by this President. Boko Haram has basically declared war on the Federal Government of Nigeria, and it is important to evaluate the situation carefully in the coming days on whether to initiate A-grade operations in the North to root out this threat now or allow it to fester and create a growing, inoperable cancer. It is better now to excise the tumor before it spreads.

The Boko Haram menace has taken a new and deadly twist, with the dreaded group issuing threats to eliminate all Christians and even Muslims currently serving in the Federal government. In the statement released by the group last week, it said: “This is a government that is not Islamic. Therefore, all its employees-Muslims and non-Muslims are Infidels.

While the deadly Maiduguri based terror group, Boko Haram, continues to maim, murder and destroy properties, the Nigeria state officials, security agencies are simply at sea as to how to curtail these strings of mayhem. The police most times try to minimize the magnitude of destruction.
Boko Haram’s Terrorism Does Not Threaten Only Nigeria. The Nigerian government has imposed a curfew on the national capital city, Abuja, following recent attacks by Islamist militants. Nightclubs, beer parlours, and cinemas must close by 10pm local time (2100 GMT) and public parks that admit children should close by 6pm. Abuja city’s administration said it has also banned parking of vehicles on two roads where most government offices are located. The security problems bedeviling Nigeria must pique our interest because of its implications for the entire West African sub-region.
To confront this problem we need to have a full understanding of the notion BOKO HARAM. Its direct translation in English means "Western Education is Forbidden" this notion is a very eccentric idea which takes its roots from the colonial era when the British having subdued the fulani's with their artillery batteries in Sokoto had implemented a system of indirect rule in Northern Nigeria, a system which allowed them to pursue their imperialist plans indirectly through the emirs taking full advantage of the existing feudal system.

This grievance has led to mass protests in the north and also the ruling Peoples Democratic Party losing a lot of seats to other political parties. The elite themselves are not safe at all as a result of the spate of high profile assassinations in the country by the dreaded Boko Haram sect. It is very obvious that there is a high level of entropy and ambiguity in the North. The real danger is not in the present but what is yet to come that is why the government must do its best to address the issue of poverty, unemployment and illiteracy in the North.

This time around Nigerians are faced with a problem in the form of terrorist jihadist militants going by the name of Boko Haram which means Western Education is forbidden in the Hausa dialect. The kidnapping of people and blowing up of government infrastructure is one thing but the act of suicide bombing whereby the aggressor is willing to risk his own life by blowing up himself and the intended target to oblivion is a whole different thing entirely.

The recent suicide bombing attack on the National Headquarters of the Nigeria Police Force which is the heart of our nation’s civil security outfit is such an unfortunate event. What even makes the situation more alarming is that it was a suicide attack, the first of its kind in our nation’s history.

This is a war that cannot be won by confrontation because these people live among us and for every terrorist that is killed there will be more to eagerly replace them so it is important that the authorities attack this problem from the roots so that our beloved nation will not follow other countries like Somalia, Afghanistan and the rest.

This is a report of how the fear of Boko Haram is threatening to change night life in the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, Abuja. It is a season of a long list of forbidden activities after 10pm- including weekends. The Federal Capital Territory Administration, FCTA, acting on intelligence and sound security advice, is toeing the path of caution.

Barely an hour after a local government council chairman was shot dead on Sunday evening in his house in Maiduguri by suspected members of the Islamic fundamentalists, Boko Haram, the group was reported to have bombed another local drinking joint at Wulari mammy market in Borno state capital leaving several persons dead and many others injured.

AFGHANISTAN! That was what it called its based in Kanamma, Yobe State. It uses guerrilla tactics as a means of doing devilish things, yet it professes Godliness. Drive-by and ride-by sporadic shooting of police officers and innocent passers-by have become another way of wreaking havoc. Bombs have recently come in handy, and bombs are being deployed with maximum effectiveness. This is the world of Boko Haram, the Islamic terrorist group that appears to be fast replacing the militants of Niger Delta.

The issue of security should not be left alone to government. From my own point of view, government alone cannot stop the activities of terrorists which have left thousands of innocent Nigerians either dead or wounded. People in their thousands are relocating from Maiduguri to their villages and other neighbouring states they consider safe, as the city has been turned into a war zone. When our correspondent visited some motor parks across the metropolis, thousands of people, including students of the University of Maiduguri which was closed on Monday, were seen trying to flee the embattled city.

Death & Destruction, Thy Name is Boko Haram
The members of this sect do not spare royalty or religious leadership. Take: On May 30 this year, suspected members of the sect shot dead Abba Anas Umar Garbai El-Kanemi, the younger brother of Shehu of Borno, Alhaji Abubakar Ibn Umar Garbai El-Kanemi. Also, a renowned Islamic Scholar, Shiekh Ibrahim Gomari Airport ward in March.

There was stampede in Kano, Bauchi, Kaduna, Maiduguri, Abuja, Jos, Kogi, Adamawa, Yobe, and Suleja over Boko Haram terrorism acts on Monday when news of incessant killings and bombing by Boko Haram with military forces were announced.

‘’We want people to know that the Federal Government fought us and therefore by the grace of Allah, we would continue fighting until we succeed or die in the process,’’ he said the sect spokesman. Abu Zaid said the sect members would continue to trail former governors of Borno and Bauchi states, Christian preachers as well as all the enemies of God.

Agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) have arrived Nigeria to help in the investigation of the 16/6 bomb attack on the headquarters of the Nigerian Police Force in Abuja. The FBI is an agency of the United States Department of Justice that serves as both a federal criminal investigative body and an internal intelligence agency (counterintelligence).

The University of Don said that despite the threats by the police and army to crush Boko Haram, the group has continued relentlessly to attack and kill policemen and military-men with ease. The manner in which they went to attack police headquarters in Abuja underscores the fact that they have intelligent people behind them.

However, it is time for government to act before it is too late!


Dr. Deji James, writing from Abuja, Human Rights Group.
13/07/11



Monday, July 4, 2011

African Premiere of The Invocation at 2nd Eko International Film Festival



The African premiere of Emmanuel Itier's multiple award winning movie THE INVOCATION narrated by the famous Hollywood actress Sharon Stone will be at the 2nd Eko International Film Festival (EKOIFF) on Saturday July 9, 2011, at the prestigious Silverbird Galleria, 133 Ahmadu Bello Way, Victoria Island, Lagos.

THE INVOCATION is a thought provoking film about God and World Peace. An exploration of the notion of the Divine around the world and through Religion, Spirituality, Science, History, Politics and Arts.

It is an invitation to elevate our school of thought and to change the code of human interaction in relation to our perceptions of God. The film proposes answers to universal questions in both a religious and non-religious context: Who am I, where do I come from, and where am I going? Is there something beyond the here and now? What is the global idea of ‘God’ which has presented us with countless conflicts throughout human history? How can we live in Peace?

The project was filmed around the world by a team of talented religious and non-religious filmmakers, and challenges us to go beyond our differences in seeking the common goal of world peace. Without agenda, the film presents a message of global understanding, unity, and humanity. Featuring interviews with respected social and political lime lights, spiritual leaders, artists, entertainers and other influential figures, THE INVOCATION is a truly inspiring source of information that compels you to "be the change you want to see in the world."

Credited cast:

Karen Armstrong ...

Michael Beckwith ...

Mustapha Cherif ...

Deepak Chopra ...

Chaim Cohen ...

Stewart Copeland ...

Brian Cox ...

The Dalai Lama ...

Rosario Dawson ...

Veronica De Laurentiis ...

Amit Goswami ...

John Hagelin ...
Ervin Laszlo ...
Malcolm McDowell ...
Dean Radin ... (as Dean Radin Ph.D.)


Awards and Festivals:
LA International Film Festival 2010 - WINNER, Best Documentary
Bev.Hills Film, TV, & New Media Fest. 2010 - WINNER, Humanitarian Award
The Orlando Global Peace Film Festival
The Spiritual Festival of Mexico City
Tel Aviv Spirit Film Festival
Santa Fe Film Festival
Santa Barbara Film Festival


For Reservations and Tickets, call 08033036171, 07066379246.


Saturday, June 25, 2011

Why Boko Haram bombed the Nigeria Police Headquarters in Abuja



Nigeria: Boko Haram Terrorism Threats: Police Headquarters Bombing and our security

I must confess that I am neither surprised by the brazen attack on the headquarters of the Nigeria Police, the almighty Louis Edet House in Abuja, by members of the Boko Haram Islamic sect, nor by the reaction of President Goodluck Jonathan. Why?

I was in Maiduguri and Bauchi August for over a week in 2009 after the Boko Haram attacks that set Borno and Bauchi States ablaze, literally. The level of destruction was unprecedented. I visited the prison and police stations that were sacked. I went to the police college where senior police officers on course were slaughtered while sleeping. I saw churches that were bombed. I went to the sect’s headquarters located at the Maiduguri Railway Terminus Areas (MRTA) that had been destroyed and taken over by security men. I was told of the atrocities committed in that very compound and shown what was alleged to be the killing chamber of the sect’s leader, Ustaz Mohammed Yusuf, who was summarily executed by the police after his arrest.

I visited the compound of Yusuf’s father-in-law, the 72-year-old Alhaji Baa Fugu Mohammed, who was alleged to be one of the financiers of the sect. The man was also executed, his compound destroyed. I interviewed two young women – 22-year-old Patricia Ibe, who was an accountancy student then and 14-year-old Chidinma Obigwe. Two of them watched as three of their religious brethren had their throats slit.

They were taken away as spoils of war, only rescued when men of the Borno State special security outfit, Operation Flush, invaded the sect’s headquarters where they and over 1,500 other people, mostly women, were held hostage.

I spoke to Rev. Dr. Daniel Egboka, Assistant General Superintendent of the National Evangelical Mission and Chairman, Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria (Borno State chapter), who was also the Pastor of the National Evangelical Mission Wukari Headquarters, Maiduguri. Not only was his church burnt down, his Assistant Pastor, Sylvester Nseobong, his brother who visited from Akwa Ibom, Patrick James, and the church’s security man, Elijah Gambo, were the three men Patricia and Chidinma watched their gory execution.

Pastor Egboka showed me the bones of his fallen colleagues; still at the very spot they were burnt. As at the time of the interview, his wife had fled Maiduguri, vowing never to set her foot again in the state or any part of the North. I interviewed the then state Governor, Ali Modu Sheriff, whose former Commissioner for Religious Affairs, Buji Fai, resigned his appointment to join the sect. Buji was also summarily executed. There were insinuations then that the Governor ordered the execution of Mohammed and Buji to stop them from spilling the bean. Sheriff denied the allegation vehemently, claiming that he was also a target. The Commander of the Operation Flush 11, Colonel Ben Ahanotu, who I met in the Governor’s office, spoke off record, detailing the enormity of the crisis and the atrocity committed by the sect members.

The Shehu of Borno, Alhaji Abubakar Ibn Umar Garbal El-Kanemi, who only assumed office on May 31, 2009, barely two months before the mayhem, spoke. He said the irreverent Yusuf embarrassed not only the state but the entire Muslim community.

The University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital (UMTH) was filled to capacity with victims – men, women, children and the aged. I spoke with soldiers and policemen with all manner of wounds. The mortuary was overflowing. As a result, corpses were being dumped at the car park of the Umaru Shehu Ultra Modern Hospital, Bulumkutu.

Police denied me access to the arrested Boko Haram members, who were in detention, but I spoke to members who were not detained and they vowed revenge. I spoke to many other victims of the madness and came out with the impression that the sect’s capacity for violence was almost infinite. Scarier was my perception that they had the capacity to sustain the insurrection. I saw a people whose thirst for blood was insatiable.

In Bauchi, it was the same level of atrocity committed by the sect members. Many young people are now in their early grave as well as religious and political leaders. I interviewed sect members arrested by the police and vowed to wage war on the nation. Both traditional and religious leaders have been displaced. Bishop A.T Moses was mentioned as the enemy to their mission as well as Pastor Sunday I. Peters.

Since 2009, I have watched as they carried out attacks with astounding precision, knocking off high value targets almost effortlessly.

So, when the group issued a statement last Wednesday, boasting that their warriors had “arrived Nigeria from Somalia where they got serious training on warfare,” and vowing that they would “wage jihad on the enemies of God and his Messenger,” I sensed an escalation in the paroxysm of violence that had gripped the
country. The vow was a reaction to the Inspector General of Police Hafiz Ringim’s boast that the days of Boko Haram were numbered after receiving 10 Armoured Personnel Carriers (APCs) from the Borno State government the previous day.

It is instructive that Ringim’s office was bombed a day after the group made its vow. It is also helpful, but by no means comforting, to note that the attack was carried out by a suicide bomber, the first time ever in Nigeria, after Boko Haram’s claim that their fighters had returned from Somalia.

I was also not surprised by Jonathan’s response when he visited Louis Edet House on Saturday. “Let me use this opportunity to assure Nigerians that it happens all over the world, no country is safe,” the President said. How the knowledge that terrorism is a global phenomenon can assuage the anxiety of distraught Nigerians, only the President can explain.

But I was not surprised because that was the same answer he gave after the gruesome murder of the Governorship candidate of the Borno State All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP), Modu Fannami Gubio, who until his death was the Commissioner for Finance. Six other people killed in that brazen attack on January 28 included the Governor’s brother, Alhaji Goni Modu Ngala, who was former chairman of Ngala local government.

Since terrorism had become global merchandise, Nigerians have nothing to complain about, the President seemed to have suggested. But that is too simplistic a solution coming from him. No Nigerian is going to be comforted by the fact that bombs are also exploding in other parts of the world including the United States and Europe.

The fact of the matter is that Nigeria has become a haven for terrorists and this should give the President serious concern. Sadly, he doesn’t seem to appreciate the enormity of the crisis because if he does, he would have appreciated the significance of the bombing of the police headquarters. It is an audacious attack executed strategically to send a clear message that if the security of the seemingly impregnable police headquarters could be easily breached, then nowhere, not even Aso Rock is safe.

Leadership is not an easy task. It is only in Nigeria that people grow younger and look more robust when they are elected or appointed into public office. In other climes the reverse is the case because leadership exerts its toll on those who occupy public office. Anyone who is in doubt should look at President Barack Obama; how much he has aged in three years.
Presidency is not a feel good job. Jonathan must roll up his sleeve and work. We have full-blown terrorism on our hands. And the successful attack on the Louis Edet House, where the Inspector General of Police, Ringim, escaped death by the whiskers, is a morale booster. It is disturbing that the President and Commander-in-Chief of the country thinks that terrorism can be wished away which is what his statement that, “Nigeria is also having some ugly incidents lately but surely we will get over it and people should not panic at all,” seems to suggest.
However, it was learnt that preliminary police investigations into the 16/6 bombing showed that the Police High Command and the top leadership of the nation’s security agencies came to that initial conclusion from reading the footages of the incident from the Close Circuit Television at the Louis Edet House. The impact of the bomb, which destroyed about 77 cars in the IG’s parking lot and reduced the Honda to an engine stump, killed the suspected bombers right inside their car.
Journalists who went to the police headquarters shortly after the blast last week observed so much confusion among the police about the particular car that actually carried the device. A good number of the policemen pointed to a mangled car whose two tyres were on a culvert in the car park as the car driven by the bomber. It took a lot of protest from the journalists to get a close photograph of the car when the rescue team comprising men of the Red Cross and National Emergency Management Agency got the human parts from the car into some black cellophane bags.

It took a four-man team of journalists from the PUNCH close to one hour to extract that piece of information from a police officer who lost his car to the blast and two of his junior colleagues to disclose the real car that carried the bomb. However, the police have said that the ongoing investigations would soon unveil the sponsors of Boko Haram.

Boko Haram is a determined foe. It must be fought decisively and even if not totally vanquished, at least defanged or we should all consider ourselves dead.


Source: Emeka Owoniyi (JNCR)


Saturday, June 18, 2011

Huffington Post Report on the Boko Haram Terrorist Suicide Bomb Attack in Abuja




The Nigerian radical Islamist sect Boko Haam claimed responsibility for a suicide bomb attack on the Louis Edet House, headquarters of the Nigeria Police Force in Abuja (FCT) on Thursday, June 16, 2011. The following are reports of it from the Huffington Post.


  • Nigeria sect spreads reach with suicide bombing

    Jun 18, 2011 ... LAGOS, Nigeria — The radical Muslim sect has shot police officials and clerics from atop motorcycles, torched churches and even freed ...

    www.huffingtonpost.com/huff-wires/20110618/af-nigeria-vio... - 1 hour ago

  • Nigeria Explosion Hits Police Headquarters In Abuja

    Jun 16, 2011 ... ABUJA, Nigeria — At least one person has been killed in an explosion outside police headquarters in Nigeria's capital Thursday, an emergency ...

    www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/06/16/nigeria-explosion-abuja_n_87796...

  • Blast at police headquarters in Nigeria capital

    Jun 16, 2011 ... ABUJA, Nigeria — At least one person has been killed in an explosion outside police headquarters in Nigeria's capital Thursday, an emergency ...

    www.huffingtonpost.com/huff-wires/20110616/af-nigeria/

  • RNN | Nigeria : Reuters: Large blast shakes buildings in ...

    FROM @RassdNews: RNN | Nigeria : Reuters: Large blast shakes buildings... 9 minutes ago. FROM AP: AP names Peoples to New England politics post. ...

    www.huffingtonpost.com/t/rnn-nigeria-reuters-large_81410713142312...

  • Explosion rocks police HQ in Nigeria

    BIG NEWS: · Iran · Middle East Protests · Julian Assange · Nigeria · Al Qaeda ... FROM @cnni: Explosion rocks police HQ in Nigeria ... 2 minutes ago ...

    www.huffingtonpost.com/t/explosion-rocks-police-hq_81332812896145...

  • I just unlocked the "Player Please!" badge on @foursquare!

    FROM AP: Nigeria sect spreads reach with suicide bombing... just now. FROM AP: Mass. clammers say airport upgrade will harm them... 2 minutes ago ...

    www.huffingtonpost.com/t/i-just-unlocked-the-playe_821182... - 1 hour ago

  • Please allow me a rare personal Tweet: Got married!

    FROM AP: Nigeria sect spreads reach with suicide bombing... 1 minute ago. FROM AP: Mass. clammers say airport upgrade will harm them... 3 minutes ago ...

    www.huffingtonpost.com/t/please-allow-me-a-rare-pe_821176... - 1 hour ago

  • Suicide attacker suspected in Nigeria police bombing: ...

    FROM @AlArabiya_Eng: Suicide attacker suspected in Nigeria police... 8 minutes ago. FROM @Lujee: NadaAuf Nope, there's no deadline, but the sooner you. ...

    www.huffingtonpost.com/t/suicide-attacker-suspecte_81321444935614...

  • Bachmann walks out to former-Christian-star-turned-I-Kissed-A-...

    FROM AP: Nigeria sect spreads reach with suicide bombing... 16 minutes ago. FROM AP: Refugee crisis mushrooms in Syrian army attacks... 21 minutes ago ...

    www.huffingtonpost.com/t/bachmann-walks-out-to-for_821205... - 1 hour ago

  • Blast hits police headquarters in Nigeria capital

    FROM @AlArabiya_Eng: Blast hits police headquarters in Nigeria capital ... 2 minutes ago. FROM AP: Floodwaters approach makeshift levee at Iowa town. ...

    www.huffingtonpost.com/t/blast-hits-police-headqua_81313729727315...




Click here for more


Monday, June 6, 2011

Breaking News: Wanted People, Boko Haram Declares



Breaking News

Wanted People, Boko Haram Declares

On 05 June, the radical terrorist sect Boko Haram has declared the following people wanted in a statement reportedly dropped at various media houses by unknown persons yesterday.

Jima?atu Ahlus-Sunnah Lidda? Awati Wal Jihad translates roughly to ‘’People Commited to the Prophet’s Teachings for Propagation and Jihad is said to have considered the following people as police informants and enemies to their mission.

In a statement written in Hausa and Arabic reads in part: ‘’All praises go to the Almighty Allah, peace and blessings be upon Prophet Mohammed, the last of the Prophets.’’

The police informants and enemies said to be: Taju Yusuf, Pastor Emmanuel, Hon. Kazeem Konitan, Mallam Abubakar Usman, Imam Moshood, Bishop Moses, Pastor Sunday I. Peters and Bashiru Ahmed as well as corrupt politicians and police officers across the country.

It was re-called back last year September when the sect attempted Jail break in Bauchi, police recovered some provocative handbills being distributed by the sect where the names of these mentioned people are also listed.

‘’We will continue to fight to revenge the death of our leader and to achieve our mission, ensuring that all our enemies are eradicated Boko Haram said.

Thus far, existing Muslim-Christian tentions in Nigeria have had a destabilizing effect on the Nigerian state far outweighing by Boko Haram’s terrorist attacks. While these sectarian tensions simmer, all Boko Haram needs to do is to continue fuelling the fire with terror attacks against state institutions, government officials, and churches until the group becomes closer to achieving one of its more insidious objectives-launching Nigeria into a full-scale war according to terrorism monitor.


Source: Segun Awofadeji


Saturday, May 21, 2011

The Muslim Woman Who Saw Jesus!

The Muslim Woman Who Saw Jesus!

Millions of people are still perishing in ignorance of the Truth of Jesus Christ, because of their unbelief and being misled by false doctrine and false religion. That is why I have to remind them of the awesome testimony of Gulshan Esther, a Muslim girl, imprisoned by her religion and severe disability, but was healed and set free by Jesus Christ HIMSELF!



You should also read the book of her unforgettable testimony The Torn Veil: The Best-Selling Story of Gulshan Esther



A true story of freedom and miraculous healing as a Muslim girl finds faith in Christ

When Gulshan Esther, a devout Muslim girl, was six months old, typhoid left her a cripple. Her loving father took her from Pakistan to England to find a cure, but the only hope the British specialist could offer was prayer. Gulshan and her father made pilgrimage to Mecca and begged Allah for healing, but it was not until her father’s untimely death that Gulshan began to receive an answer. In her grief she wanted to die, but as she called out to God, for the first time in her life she sensed she was being heard. She heard a low, gentle voice say, "I won’t let you die. I will keep you aliveÖI am Jesus, son of Mary."

As Gulshan began reading the Quran, her interest in Jesus grew, until one amazing night he appeared to her in her bedroom in a blaze of light. He restored her crippled arm and leg and taught her The Lord’s Prayer. He told her to go to his people—now her people—and tell them what he had done. Since that time, and to this day, she has been a joyous, obedient disciple of Christ. The Torn Veil is an amazing story of faith and determination.

This moving autobiography was first published in 1984 and has sold over 200,000 copies worldwide.

Click on the Amazon image of the book cover below to order for this book of the extraordinary testimony of this Muslim woman who saw Jesus our Lord!



Friday, April 29, 2011

Islamic Terrorism or Lunatic Muslims On Rampage?



Islamic Terrorism Or Lunatic Muslims On Rampage?

If there is anything the repressive Arab regimes of the middle east and north Africa and the traditional institutions in parts of northern Nigeria share, it is the deliberate misinterpretation of Islam to hold on to power while abusing human rights and dignity. There is often a convenient convergence of culture and the clergy to perpetuate this fraud on the people. In Saudi Arabia, less than 1,000 princes and members of the royal family control a country that earns about $1 billion every day when oil prices climb above 100 dollars a barrel.

~ By Salisu Suleiman
April 29, 2011 01:18AMT


Islamic Terrorism is is defined by Wikipedia as "a term for acts of terrorism committed by extremist Muslims for the purpose of achieving varying political and/or religious ends."

The history of Islamic Terrorism is as old as the religion of Islam and trying to separate the sheep from the goats as Mr. Suleiman has attempted is not as simple as ABC, because terrorism is an instrument of violent agitation for the realization of a cause, no matter the purpose and the question of its justification is subject to the interpretation of the terrorists and their apologists.


Osama bi Laden in a 1998 photograph

The gory images of the horrors of Islamic Terrorism have been haunting the world from the Middle East, Africa, Europe, Southeast Asia, and the United States since the 1970's to date The horrors have become recurrent nightmares in our lives. The history of humankind will not be complete without the inclusion of the atrocities of the Al-Qaeda of Osama Bin Laden.

FORENSIC FORCE: ‘Arab awakening' in Arewa? by Salisu Suleiman is on the website of the 234 Next on April 29, 2011 01:18AMT. It is worth reading, because it is perhaps the most critical analysis of the political crisis plaguing Nigeria of which the most recent is the last post election violence in some northern states after the disputed results of the presidential election of April 16, 2011. The lunatic fringe of Muslim youths revolted against the victory of President Goodluck Jonathan, a Christian from the southern state of Bayelsa, because he defeated their fellow Muslim and northern hero Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (retd), a former military head of state.

You can also read my own report on The Causes and Consequences of the 2011 Post Election Violence in Nigeria.

~ By Ekenyerengozi Michael Chima


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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

President Jonathan, you must rescue the NYSC Members


Some NYSC members on national service for INEC during the 2011 Elections

President Jonathan on the National Youth Service Corps Members: “will do what is right” including Professional Mental Health Counseling

Our world has a long history of election violence but what makes the April 2011 Nigeria election violence distinct is the reported horrifying death of some National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) members.

How many of them actually got slaughtered, severely disfigured, vanished in the bushes or yet to be found remain unknown given our fragile intelligence and forensic power but we know that a good number of service corps members died in various riots across the predominantly Muslim northern States.

As young men and women serving in Nigeria’s National Youth Service Corps, a mandatory yearlong service, doing their civic work, little did they know that some of them will fall victim to deadly rioting that tailed the presidential election in particular.
As part of their calling they were helping to run polling stations but most of these corps members happened to be of the Christian and Southern stock resulting in their been murdered, set ablaze, raped and maimed.

These victims reportedly fell to the hands of angry Muslim mobs who saw themselves avenging against the Southern Christian President, Goodluck Jonathan the declared winner of the presidential vote of April 16th, 2011.

There is no doubt that the government will financially compensate many victims, and the families of the sacrificial victims or the dead, as well as give official recognition to the victims.

But what is needed now and more than ever is putting in place crisis-based psychotherapy or counseling plans.
As soon as possible, we need professional form of mental health care assessing for brief and longer-term therapy for the possibly traumatized victims, their children and families.

Please note that this is not ‘Oyibo (White people) thing’ or plan as depression and anxiety knows no boundary when it comes to race, ethnic, religion or gender.

We will all agree that many victims of this huge and sudden trauma should not be alone to bear the psychological problems of these torturous and ferocious acts. The ones that are fortunate to be alive, and their families will need practical, insightful and humane way to deal with these traumatic worries.

Immediate crisis-based programs manned by competent psychologists, counselors, and clinicians across various regional human and social services agencies should be set up for the care of victims and their families as well as relatives.

In traumatic matters as it relates to this regional violence, feelings of irritation, apprehension, indecisiveness, hopelessness and other likes are expected and the successful management of these issues are essential.

The victims will gain greatly from counseling along with getting empathy, and a focus on the special needs of these vulnerable citizens will be helpful in the long term. The overall well being of these victims needs monitoring as many of them could be struggling with the effects of culture shock as many were reportedly victims of forced confinement, fire traumatization and explosive suffering.

The front line counselors and clinicians across what could be called or set up as Crisis Drop- in- Centers should be ready for and open to tolerance as they will be seeing persons with responses of all types which could include self-blame, fatigue, uneasiness, acute stress, insecurity, gloom, confusion and loss.

The federal and State governments should be aware that these violent occurrences will cause many non-Muslim northerners living in the north to possibly remain in a state of heightened anxiety both at work, school and in the marketplace. As such, their concerns about more violence should also be followed with various forms of actions like group counseling sessions, inter-community relations counseling, and a short tem neighborhood security or policing in highly sensitive areas of the North.

~ By John Oshodi

John Egbeazien Oshodi, Ph.D., DABPS; FACFE; is a Licensed Clinical/Forensic Psychologist; Diplomate of American Board of Psychological Specialties; Fellow of American College of Forensic Examiners (For Psy); Former Interim Associate Dean and an Assistant Professor of Psychology, Broward College - North Campus, Coconut Creek, Florida.



Sunday, April 17, 2011

Boko Haram Movement And Its Deadly Impact



Boko Haram Movement And Its Deadly Impact

By Barrister Bunmi V. Osin (Email: igbala1@yahoo.co.uk)
( Tuesday, April 5, 2011 )

"Back to the crux of the matter. Why has the National Assembly members suddenly gone to sleep? Have they not heard of the over 4,000 Darul Islam sect members in Mokwa of Niger State that were dislodged and sent to their respective States?" -Barrister Bunmi V. Osin

The Nigerian nation has had more than its fair share of conflicts. From inter-ethnic, intra-ethnic and religious conflicts to land disputes etc. e.g. Shagamu (Yoruba vs Hausa in July 1999; Aguleri vs Umuleri in Anambra State in April, 2000; the Ikulu vs Baju in Zango Kataf; the ethno-religious fracas in parts of Jos, in Sept. 2001, July 2002, and Nov. 2008; acts of militancy in the Niger Delta and most recently the attacks on innocent Nigerians that started in Bauchi and sporadically spread to other States in the North where the Boko Haram adherents had pitched their tents, etc. The latest incident is one attack too many on the psyche of Nigeria as a nation, I am no prophet of doom, but are all these incidents not pointers to the American prediction of the disintegration of the nation in no distant future?
The very foundation of our existence as a nation was rocked violently by the religious bigots called 'Boko Haram' literally meaning 'western education is sin', who were desirous of ridding the nation of the 'sins of westernization' by a futile attempt, to install a parallel government based on the Islamic principles, as according to Ustaz Yusuf, all those Northern Nigeria Governors clamouring for Sharia were hypocrites as reported in the Sunday Sun Newspaper of August 2, 2009 as they do not believe in Islam and in the process over 800 innocent Nigerians were reported to have been killed and properties worth millions of naira destroyed in these senseless attacks. We commend the security agencies that battled to restore peace and order in the northern parts of the country where this incident took place despite the problems confronting by them, ranging from inadequate funds, and use of archaic weapons, against more sophisticated weaponry flaunted by the Boko Haram bigots.

During the uprisings in Jos and other parts of the State, at different times, the stories were tilted to sound as if it were acts of genocide against the Muslims, which is a far cry from the truth. In Maiduguri, Bauchi, Yobe, Kano, etc. States where the Boko Haram people struck, the reportage was presented leaving out the attacks carried out on Christian's places of worship. For instance, the selective attack on places of Christian worship and the killing of the Pastors and forceful conversion of captured Christians to embrace Islam and join their evil jihad were not reported. The Light Bearer - a newspaper published by the COCIN Church, later presented pictures of burnt places of worship, with charred remains of adherents that met their unfortunate death in the hands of these devils. Why was the media silent on that aspect? Was that a deliberate plan to suppress the truth? Truth, like murder, will always out, as they say. Acts of arson targeted at Christian properties and places of worship have been going on in the country systematically, e.g. in Zaria where 37 Churches were burnt in 1987, and several others cases in Kano, Bauchi, Jos and other places.

Back to the crux of the matter. Why has the National Assembly members suddenly gone to sleep? Have they not heard of the over 4,000 Darul Islam sect members in Mokwa of Niger State that were dislodged and sent to their respective States? If Borno State had taken the bull by the horn and evicted Boko Haram sect members based on Security Reports, would that sect have been able to wreak havoc on the citizenry as they did? For fear of Darul Islam starting a similar attack from the fringes of River Niger, the Chief Servant of Niger State did well by being proactive and directed that the people who inhabited the Mokwa enclave be evicted to wherever they came from. That has since been done, and those that came from Bauchi, Borno, Kano, and even outside the shores of Nigeria, have been deported. A similar thing was belatedly done in Borno State, where the Boko Haram people were pitched and had wreaked havoc on the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

The uprisings in Plateau State did not start with Governor Jang. It will be recalled that in September, 2001, there was Muslim vs Christian fracas in Jos, and later in June/July, 2002, there were incidents of uprisings in Barakin Ladi, Shendam, Wase when various indigenous tribes versus the Hausa Fulani settlers, and the November 2008 ethnic/religious crisis over an election conducted in Jos North Local Government Area of the State. For the fact that the crisis erupted before the announcement of the election results is a pointer to the fact that crisis was brewing waiting to be ignited! Governor Jang, in order to nip the brewing crisis in the bud, as would any responsible Chief Security Officer of a State, directed that the Boko Haram(?) people be dislodged from Wase LGA, and taken to their respective States. When that was done, the National Assembly cried foul, that as Nigerians, they were entitled to live in any part of the country and even set up a Committee to investigate the matter! Their eviction caused ripples for those who do not wish peace to be restored in Plateau State as they have sworn that Plateau will know no peace till the indigenous people are subjugated and annihilated. Let us rationally cite the matter of the ASUU strike which has lingered for over three months now, and the Federal Government is reluctant to sign an agreement that would be binding on the State Governments, yet it can set up a Committee to investigate a State crisis - why the double standard? If truly that is the position, the National Assembly should rise from its slumber and set up Committees to Investigate Niger and Borno States for dislodging Darul Islam and Boko Haram members from those States forthwith.

The arrow heads at the National Assembly calling for Governor Jang's head have so far kept mum. Were those people who were relocated to their villages not Nigerians? Why the double standard for God's sake? If a smaller incident takes place in Plateau State, the whole nation, especially those who are in a hurry to actualize the American prediction put their propaganda machinery to use, so much so that they make it sound as if it was a 8th wonder of the world! Or could it be said that their silence is now due to the fact that the Director-General, Department of State Security Service in a session with the Committee on Interior, according to Newspaper reports, informed them that the intelligence reports on the Boko Haram group were forwarded to the authorities concerned but that the powers that be treated it with kid gloves and maintained that he wanted to ridicule Islam because he is a Christian? If action had been taken on the Security reports, the mind bogging questions are: Would Nigeria be faced with such wanton destruction of lives and properties? Is there a superior religion in the country? Why are the Christians playing the second fiddle in the land? Is the Constitution of Nigeria no longer supreme, where it guarantees all citizens the freedom of worship and association?

It is said that he who comes to equity must come with clean hands, but we are seeing double standards being exhibited by those that find themselves in the corridors of power by hook or crook. Take for instance, the case of the dislodgement of those miscreants in Wase Local Government Area of Plateau State, who claimed they were nomads, but the Chairman of the Local Government, who incidentally is a Muslim and also a Fulani man, reported that in view of the crisis that had rocked the State, he was weary of the people, as they came without cows nor sheep as the nomads usually do, but they arrived in truck loads, which made him suspicious of their mission, methinks they could be members of the Boko Haram.

It would be recalled that after the crisis in parts of Jos North LGA, it was alleged that mercenaries were being used for the attacks and as usual, there were denials, even when some were caught right in the township of Jos and the Okene Local Government Chairman in Kogi State quickly claimed they were Vigilante group members of the Local Government. If indeed his claim is true, what brought them to Jos at that point in time when there was crisis in the State, and who gave them permission to carry fire arms? Not only that they were armed, but also had fake Army and Police uniforms. What has scuttled the Nigeria Police, the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, etc. that tax payers money will be used to hire hoodlums that turn back to attack peace loving members of the nation? In a society where the rule of law is being upheld, the Okene Local Government should also joined and prosecuted along with his so-called Vigilante members to serve as a deterrent to those who fan embers of disunity in the country. Those mercenaries were not tried in Plateau State, but taken to the Federal Capital Territory only for the criminals to be freed. Is it that there was no court of competent jurisdiction to try them in Plateau State where they were arrested? The question is: who ordered their release and under what grounds? This gave them the lee way to continue their ungodly activities. One cannot but conclude that there is an evil conspiracy against Plateau State and Christians at large in northern Nigeria.

It is being rumoured that there is an Islamic agenda is being systematically implemented in the country as we recall some years back during the Gen. Ibrahim Babangida regime; Nigeria was surreptitiously smuggled into the membership of the Organisation of Islamic Countries (OIC). If no systematic Islamalization of Nigeria is being discreetly pursued, it should be clear to all reasonable people that what is good for Governor Mu'azu Babaginda is good for Modu Sherif and Governor Jang. If Jang or anyone for that matter falters, his attention should be drawn to it, but where discriminatory policies are meted out on Jang, while his contemporaries who did similar or more heinous things hold sway spells doom for the country. The people are wide awake and are seeing the injustice being done on particularly the Christians in this country and this portends great danger, if not checked, or else we are playing to the gallery to fulfil the prediction of the disintegration of the nation.

Let me conclude by saying that the enemies of Nigeria should not use religion to bring about the disintegration of the country to fruition. If Nigerians unite, no matter their religious beliefs, the country will be the better for it. Our common bond should be the nation, and not ethnic or religious affiliations. The situation as it is now in Jos where Christians occupy a particular section of the city and Muslims on the other side creates room for suspicion among the citizens. Jos is a cosmopolitan city habited by Christians, Moslems, Freethinkers and even the Atheists. With mutual suspicion which has made every kith and kin moving towards one side of the city lends credence to the fact that all is not yet well in Jos Township and it will certainly be a hard nut to crack given our recent experiences in the land for cohabitation to take place. I pray that God gives our leaders a foresight to tackle the situation and Nigerians the tolerance to live peacefully with each other in whatever area of their choice. My strong belief is that religion should serve as a means of uniting the people, no matter the differences in beliefs.

This write-up essentially serves as a call-up to all clergies both Muslims and Christians to rise to their callings by ensuring that sound doctrines are taught to their adherents so that the likes of Ustaz Mohammed Yusuf of Gaidam LGA Borno State, killer Pastor King of Lagos will not rise to teach some fallacies and hoodwink the people ultimately leading to loss of lives and destruction of properties. I could remember Pastor Sunday I. Peters, Pastor Timi Emmanuel who have been displaced for risk of assassination by members of Boko Haram because of their standing for the truth. All Nigerians of goodwill should condemn in the strongest terms, these senseless attacks on the citizenry. These are the lessons of Boko Haram which Nigerians have learnt in the hard way. The freedom of religion enshrined in the Nigerian constitution should not be abused, as none of the Holy books have been rewritten to now contain new and strange teachings of how to get to heaven other than those already known, tested and believed by their adherents. May the souls of those innocent people that were killed in these senseless attacks rest in peace, amen.

Barrister Bunmi V. Osin
Bauchi
Email: igbala1@yahoo.co.uk



Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Northern Nigeria: Background to Conflict


Northern Nigeria. Photo Credit: The Will

Dec 20, 2010 22:01 ET



Northern Nigeria: Background to Conflict


DAKAR, December 20, 2010/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- Nigeria's far north is not the hot bed of Islamic extremists some in the West fear, but it needs reinforced community-level peacebuilding, a more subtle security response, and improved management of public resources lest lingering tensions lead to new violence.


Northern Nigeria: Background to Conflict,* the latest report from the International Crisis Group, examines the region's conflict risks. Violence has flared up there periodically for more than 30 years. Mainly in the form of urban riots, it has seen Muslims pitted against Christians, confrontations between different Islamic sects, and rejectionist sects against the state. The relative calm that much of northern Nigeria had enjoyed for several years was broken by the emergence in 2009 of Boko Haram, a radical group that appears to have some links to al-Qaeda.



Nigeria's northern emirs gave Prince Charles a royal welcome on his tour of the West African country this week. Here he arrives at the palace of the Emir of Kano (4th from right). Photo Credit: The BBC News

In the build-up to the 2011 national elections, the worst-case scenario is that local violence will polarize the rest of the country. This must be avoided through actions at the local, regional and national level.

“While some in the West panic at what they see as growing Islamic radicalism in the region, the roots of the problem are more complex and lie in Nigeria's history and contemporary politics”, says Titi Ajayi, Crisis Group's West Africa Fellow.
Many common factors fuel conflicts across Nigeria: in particular, the political manipulation of religion and ethnicity and disputes between supposed local groups and “settlers” over distribution of public resources. The failure of the state to assure public order, contribute to dispute settlement and implement post-conflict peacebuilding measures also plays a role, as does economic decline and unemployment. As elsewhere in the country, the far north – the twelve states that apply Sharia (Islamic law) – suffers from a potent mix of economic malaise and contentious, community-based distribution of public resources.

But there is also a specifically northern element. A thread of rejectionist thinking runs through northern Nigerian history, according to which collaboration with secular authorities is illegitimate. While calls for an “Islamic state” in Nigeria should not be taken too seriously, despite media hyperbole, they do demonstrate that many in the far north express political and social dissatisfaction through greater adherence to Islam and increasingly look to the religious canon for solutions to multiple problems in their lives.

On the positive side, much local conflict prevention and resolution does occur, and the region has historically shown much capacity for peaceful co-existence between its ethnic and religious communities. Generally speaking, for a vast region beset with social and economic problems, the absence of widespread conflict is as notable as the pockets of violence.

The starting point for addressing the conflicts must be a better understanding of the historical, cultural and other contexts in which they take place. The region has experienced recurrent violence, particularly since the early 1980s. These are the product of several complex and inter-locking factors, including a volatile mix of historical grievances, political manipulation and ethnic and religious rivalries.
“Northern Nigeria is little understood by those in the south, still less by the international community, where too often, it is viewed as part of bigger rivalries in a putative West-Islam divide”, says EJ Hogendoorn, Crisis Group's Acting Africa Program Director. “Still, the overall situation needs to be taken seriously. If it were to deteriorate significantly, especially along Christian-Muslim lines, it could have grave repercussions for national cohesion in the build-up to national elections in 2011”.



Source: International Crisis Group




Releases displayed in EST time
Dec 20, 2010
22:01Northern Nigeria: Background to Conflict
Dec 18, 2010
00:54Africa, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Group of States and IOM Strengthen Cooperation
Dec 16, 2010
10:04Strativity Group Announces 2011 Customer Experience Management Next Generation Certification Program
02:46Le Président de la Commission de l'Union Africaine participe à Alger à une conférence internationale célébrant le 50ème anniversaire de la Résolution 1514 de l'Assemblée Générale de l'ONU
02:44The Chairperson of the AU Commission concludes visit to Algeria where he participated in the International Conference on the 50th Anniversary of UNGA Resolution 1514
Releases displayed in EST time
Dec 20, 2010
22:01Northern Nigeria: Background to Conflict
Dec 18, 2010
00:54Africa, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Group of States and IOM Strengthen Cooperation
Dec 16, 2010
10:04Strativity Group Announces 2011 Customer Experience Management Next Generation Certification Program
02:46Le Président de la Commission de l'Union Africaine participe à Alger à une conférence internationale célébrant le 50ème anniversaire de la Résolution 1514 de l'Assemblée Générale de l'ONU
02:44The Chairperson of the AU Commission concludes visit to Algeria where he participated in the International Conference on the 50th Anniversary of UNGA Resolution 1514