Guest post: Sharia Police and Impunity: Will President Buhari Tackle Radical Islam in Northern Nigeria?

Guest post by Leo Igwe.

Muhammadu Buhari promised to address, if elected to the office of the president, the widespread insecurity occasioned by Boko Haram in Northern Nigeria. Now he has been elected and sworn in as the president of the country, will he do that? I want to quickly point out that it would be a grave mistake if Buhari reduces the problem of insecurity in Northern Nigeria to the Boko Haram uprising. No it is not. Insecurity in Northern Nigeria is more than the violent campaign of these Islamic militants. Boko Haram is an offshoot of a vicious ideology that is pervasive in the region – that is radical Islam. The violent attacks by this jihadist group are just a tip of the iceberg of fanaticism and bigotry. They are the latest manifestations of the sinister infestation of radical Islam

So, will Buhari address the pervasive issue of Islamic extremism in Northern Nigeria? Or is he going to focus mainly on defeating Boko Haram militants in Sambisa forest when there are Boko Haramic elements across the region? Take for instance the state sponsored sharia police. There is overwhelming evidence that these sharia enforcement units in the northern states are abusing the rights of innocent citizens with impunity. They destroy the goods of traders, arrest those ‘attempting’ to perform gay marriage, and force Muslims to fast during Ramadan. Some days ago they called for the execution of blasphemers. [Read more…]

Alirou reached out and touched his father on the ground

The Sunday Times (South Africa) tells of how Boko Haram is making life hell for the people it doesn’t murder.

In a makeshift hut sheltered from a stinging desert wind, Adama Issaika holds her infant daughter close. Three months ago, she stood helpless as gunmen from the Islamist group Boko Haram lined up her husband and relatives against a mosque and shot them dead.

“My littlest boy, Alirou, reached out and touched his father on the ground,” she recalled. [Read more…]

All of them are traumatised

According to the UN, more than 200 of the girls rescued from Boko Haram are visibly pregnant.

The UN Population Fund (UNFPA) said that 214 of the rescued girls were “visibly pregnant”, according to the International Business Times.

The online magazine said the claims followed reports that women and girls kidnapped by the insurgents were routinely raped and forced to marry their abductors.

Turai Kadir, who helps in the internally displaced people camps in the city, said the former hostages were “not in great condition”. “All of them are traumatised,” she added.

So that’s their lives ruined.



One piece of better news out of Nigeria – not fantastic news, just correcting a bad thing news, but still, something.

Nigeria’s military says it has rescued 200 girls and 93 women from a notorious Boko Haram stronghold, but an army spokesman says the hostages were not those kidnapped from Chibok a year ago.

“The troops rescued 200 abducted girls and 93 women,” Colonel Sani Usman told Reuters in a text message.

They were not, however, from Chibok, the village from which more than 200 girls were abducted in April 2014, he said.

“So far, they (the army) have destroyed and cleared Sassa, Tokumbere and two other camps in the general area of Alafa, all within the Sambisa Forest.”

The women and girls were rescued from camps “discovered near or on the way to Sambisa,” one army official said.

[Read more…]

They make a lovely couple

How sweet; the worst people in the world are joining forces. Daesh has accepted Boko Haram’s offer of allegiance. I’m sure that was a tense wait for Boko Haram, before the approval came through – would they be murderous and loathsome enough? But apparently Daesh has decided they have enough potential to be accepted.

Islamic State (IS) has accepted a pledge of allegiance from Nigeria’s militant group Boko Haram, according to an audio message.

In the tape, which has not been verified, an IS spokesman says the aim of establishing a caliphate has now been expanded to West Africa. [Read more…]