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PROJECT TOPIC: THE SOCIO-ECONOMIC IMPACT OF THE BOKO HARAM INSURGENCE IN NIGERIA: (2009-2013)

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Chapter One: General Introduction

1.1 Background of the Study

Nigeria as a nation-state is under a sever internal socio-economic and security threat. As a more general level, the threat has social, economic, political and environmental dimensions. Each of these dimensions has greatly affected the nation‘s stability, and can be traced to the ethnic militia armies, ethnic and religious conflicts, poverty, terrorism, armed robbery, corruption, economic sabotage, and environmental degradation (Ilufoye, 2009).

Boko Haram insurgence becomes the major problem facing Nigerians in the recent time. These groups have perpetrated several bombing that have killed millions of innocent citizens of this country Nigeria and also caused the destruction of both private and public properties worth of billion of naira. This derives from their bid to make people in the north east geo-political zone of Nigeria to embrace their view on Islamic Nigeria code and western education.

The predominant threat and security challenges in the area are emendating from un-abating attacks on Nigerian citizens, individuals, public and governmental installations, kidnapping and destruction of properties. All these effect of Boko Haram activities are serious crime against the Nigeria state, which has threatened its national security and socio-economic activities. This has posed a great challenges to the ground strategy for national security of which the primary aim is ―to strengthen the federal republic of Nigeria to advance her interest and objectives, to contain instability, control crime, quality of life of every citizens, improve the well fare and the eliminate corruption‖ (Damba-zau 2007:51)

Boko Haram activities, has destabilized socio-economic activities. Increased crime and destruction of both life and property of Nigerian citizens. This can be attested to by the mass movement of people living in northern part of the country most especially maiduguri, which is the capital of Borno State. This situation has made it impossible for the citizens in that part ―Northren‖ of Nigeria to carry on their legitimate businesses. It is also scaring foreign investors out of the country. Students have been forced to flee their schools. The gravity of the crisis has made some government to vow never to allow Nigerians students from their state to go to the Northern part of Nigeria for anything. Boko Haram activities also effected the posting of students of southern and eastern extradition on national youth service corps (NYSC) to the north, to the extent that parents are strongly resisting the posting of their children as copper to the north.

Boko Haram itself, is a fatal blow to the noble objective of the scheme as a unifying strategy, the unity of Nigerian is seriously threatened by Boko Haram fundamentalist sect and therefore, considered to be a major potential terrorist threat affecting Nigerian mostly on the part of socio-economic activities of the country.

1.2  Statement of the Problem

Boko Haram activities was described by us intelligence agents in November 2011 ―as a local salafist group attacking Christians and local police stations with matchet and poison tipped arrows in Nigeria‘s northeastern Borno state. According to him:

Boko Haram is a way of thinking, it is politically driven, they are loosely organized grassroots insurrection against not only the Abuja government but the traditional Muslim establishment as well. (Campbell, 2011).

After nearly a decade of violence, Nigeria government still does not have an effective strategy for dismantling the group. The terrorist organization preys on the disillusioned Muslims of the north, who are fed up with corruption. And have few economic opportunities, Nigeria is a heterogeneous country divided by two religious beliefs aside traditional religion. The northern half of the country is almost completely Muslim (50 per cent of the total Nigerians population) and the southern half is mostly dominated by Christians (40 per cent of the total Nigerians population). Originating in the Muslim dominated northern region of the country, the movement other rejected everything deemed western. The activities of these groups ―Boko Haram‖ grew its ranks by taking advantages of the widespread anger in the north over the country‘s gap. In the north, 72 percent of the population live below the poverty line, compared to only 22 percent in the southern part Christopher (Bartolta, 2011)

The political goal of Boko Haram sect is to create an Islamic nation in the twelve northern states of Nigerians, eventually, spreading to the rest of the country. From its inception Boko Haram viewed Nigeria as a state or a country running by non-believers and made the government its main target, ever when the country had a Muslim president.

Therefore, this research work seeks to find the following:

1.   Is poverty inducing the Boko Haram insurgency in Nigeria?

2.   Does the ―Boko Haram‖ insurgence have any socio-economic implication on Nigerians development?

3.   Is dialogue a desideration to the Boko Haram menace in Nigeria?

1.3 Objectives of the Study

The broad objectives of the study are to examine the activities of the Boko Haram and its socio- economic implication on Nigeria‘s development. Using Boko Haram terrorism in Nigeria as a case study. To achieve this, specifically, this research work is designed to examine the following:

1.    To determine if poverty is inducing the Boko Haram insurgency in Nigeria

2.    To assess the socio-economic implication of Boko Haram insurgence on the nation.(Nigeria)

3.    To determine if dialogue is a desideration to the Boko Haram menace in Nigeria

1.4      Literature Review

Literature review has to do with what other scholars and authors have contributed to this study so far. The term ―terrorism‖ refers to the systematic use of threat of violence to communicate to political massage rather than defeat an opponent, military force. Thus, the targets of terrorism are symbolic and the victims of terrorism represent a wider audience. To achieve a maximum shock effective, terrorist violence is usually dramatic and provocative.

Typically, small number of extremists who otherwise lack the capacity to challenge those in power resort to terrorism. A defining characteristics of terrorism is that its users expects rewards that are of proportionate to both the resources. They posses and the risk they assume:

Terrorism is furthermore strategies that are not restricted to any particular ideology (smlter and Beltes, 2001). According to Reich 1998, as a strategy of resistance to the modem state, terrorism emerged some half century after the French revolution, when the term originated as a description of the state regime of terror. Russia revolutionaries and anarchist in French, Spain, Italy and German established terrorism as a central mechanism in attempt to over throw the established regimes, most of which were autocratic in the submission of Lain mclean terrorism as a pejorative term, also applies to the deeds of government of sovereign state. According to Lain Mclean, an term ―state sponsored terrorism‖, is often used to described the conduct of various government indirectly organizing or indirectly assisting perpetration of violence acts in other state. Lain Mclean argued that in recent time, many countries of divergent ideological persuasion have engaged in this kind of activities while in some cases strictly condemning others forms practices (Lain Mclean, 1996). Meanwhile, terrorism is a contested concept that resist precise definition. Since the term is both elastic and emotionally powerful, it lend itself to subjective interpretation driven by political rather than analytical purposes, it is also difficult to distinguish terrorism from other forms of violence. Such as, for example querilla warfare or criminal activities, if terrorism is defined in terms of the intension behind the action, is it possible to know those intension? What is the relationship between religion and terrorism, be non-combatants for example?. If so are attacks on security target act of terrorism?

Though, there is no official definition of terrorism agreed on through out the world, and definitions tend to rely heavily on who is doing the definition and for what purpose. Some definition focus on terrorist tactics to defined the term, while others focus on the actor. Ethnic separatist, violence in the 1930‘s provoked the League of Nations formed after world war 1 to encourage world stability and peace to defined terrorism for the first time as:

All criminal acts directed against a state and intended or calculated to create a state of terror in the mind of particular persons or group of persons or the general public. (League of Nation convection definition of terrorism, 1937).

Therefore, bringing to our understanding that Boko Haram sect is pre-occupied with carrying out various degree of attacks on civilians, usually used by the powerless against powerful;

International terrorism interludes terrorists attacking a foreign targets other than within own country or abroad (Rurke 2008:316).

This means that September 11, 2011 attack was an international terrorism while one of the attacks by the Boko Haram sect such as the police stations attacks is a domestic  terrorism. But it becomes  complicated  if the Boko  Haram  sect  is  still  a  domestic  terrorism  group despites it seeming connection with other international sect such as Hamas and Alqueda.


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