Image Credit: The Global Panorama / Creative Commons
Boko Haram is an Islamist terrorist organization, which is ironic because most of their victims and territories are Muslims, and in Muslim dominated areas. Considering the fact that Islam means peace, there is nothing Islamic about the destruction they have caused for more than a decade in the northeastern part of Nigeria as well as in Chad, Niger and Northern Cameroon.
It is estimated that in 2018, Boko Haram had been linked to the deaths of over 37,000 people.
The United Nations Children’s Fund has reported that the group has kidnapped more than 1,000 children in northeastern Nigeria since 2013 to spread fear and show power. Similarly, the Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre believes that over two million people have been displaced in the North East as a result of Boko Haram’s terror activities.
Boko Haram is a clear menace to society.
Growing up, all the events Boko Haram carried out made me feel nothing but unsafe from the dropping of bombs in different northern states including mine to the kidnapping of young girls and boys like myself. As I become a young adult, I am desperate for my region and country to rid itself of this dangerous threat. Two major events carried out by Boko Haram in my country in 2020 have made that desperation increase.
The world, or at least my world, woke up on Saturday, November 28 2020 to the shocking news of the killing and beheading of over 70 farmers in Zabamari village, an agrarian community famous for rice farming and fishing 20 kilometers from Maiduguri, the epicentre of Boko Haram insurgency in the past decade. The families of those farmers mourn this tragedy while the world moves on, as tragedies like this are often only covered by some Nigerian outlets, but remain quite unknown to the rest of the world. The government’s lack of better response to Boko Haram’s activities have proved time and time again how little they care about the citizens of this country. Boko Haram needs to go and Nigeria deserves a government that is ready to do the job.
On the night between December 11-12 2020, over 300 schoolboys who were students of the Government Science Secondary Schools in Kankara, Katsina State were unfortunately kidnapped from their school. On December 15, Boko Haram claimed responsibility for the kidnapping of the schoolboys, however the government denied it, claiming the attack was carried out by bandits in the area. Six days after their abduction, the boys were released after negotiations with their kidnappers. The governor of the state did not say what the bandits got for freeing the students. This whole ordeal raises questions not only about Boko Haram, but about the government.
Was this attack politically staged by the government?
If Boko Haram really kidnapped those boys then why would they give them back, yet not return the over 200 girls they kidnapped in April 2019? If the government can successfully bring back these schoolboys, why haven’t such efforts been made to bring back others kidnapped by Boko Haram, or even completely rid our communities of this menace?
As you can see, Boko Haram has done nothing but cause thousands of people pain and panic. Furthermore, the government refuses to listen to the outcries of the public, not even when it comes to police brutality and insurgency. If the government continues down this path of not giving the citizens the safety they deserve, then they might as well not be in office. Gubernatorial and Presidential elections will arrive, and we hope to vote for people who will enact the kind of change we desire and deserve.