Deji Adeyanju: The Rise Of Political Boko Haram And 2015 General Elections

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bokoAll over the world what makes insurgency distinct is that, it is ideology driven but in Nigeria it has become common knowledge even to a kindergarten child that the present spate of bombings, mass murder, kidnappings, etc are politically motivated with imputed spiritual connotation. Religion is only used as a tool to recruit the hungry Almajiris and children of the poor as vessels of destruction in order to carry out the political goal of a few. That is why the term Political Boko Haram is now commonly used to refer to activities of insurgents. What makes the insurgency in Nigeria different is that religion is only used to power the engine for the political actualization of the sponsors of this cartel called Boko Haram. The Boko Haram sect which started as a religious group was hijacked during the tenure of former governor Ali Modu Sheriff (SAS) to achieve his political ambition of securing a 2nd Term and was later dumped. Like all groups of growing influence, politicians at such times identify with them, make use of them to realize their ambition and later sideline them. This was the same fate faced by Boko Haram at that time. The group was said to have been armed by SAS and later dumped. Some elements within the group haven been armed felt they must seek greener pastures and later resulted into criminal activities like; robbery, kidnapping, etc to survive. Although no longer close to power, some of the leaders of the group still maintained constant touch with some key politicians in government in Borno but did not have unlimited access like they use to. They were barely struggling for survival when suddenly by some divine arrangement Goodluck Jonathan became Acting President then later President, and wanted to seek election after completing a two year period of his late boss President Yaradua. Northern political elites started to kick against the move saying it was their turn to rule as the mandate given to Yaradua was an eight year mandate. But Jonathan being an incumbent was challenged by these elements within his party the PDP and they began forming alliances. They called this alliance “Northern Elders Forum”. This forum unified all Northern Aspirants within the party to fight against their common enemy – Jonathan, but still lost at the PDP primaries. Before they lost, as the agitation was growing for Jonathan not to contest in 2011, around 2010, bombings and attacks by Boko Haram was on the increase and many analyst agreed that it was definitely because of the political tension in the country as some Northern elites wanted to make a political point. Many believed that some leadership members of Boko Haram who were scattered all-over and uncoordinated after the death of their leader must have been contacted by disgruntled Northern leaders to cause mayhem and probably ensure Jonathan becomes intimidated which might cause him to shelve his agenda. Churches and crowded places were targeted for mass murder with high causality figures recorded. But instead of Jonathan to shelve his agenda, he campaigned even more aggressively and won the 2011 General Elections. It seemed Goodluck Jonathan understood the strategy of the Northern elites that the only way to defeat terrorism is not to be terrorized, cajoled or intimidated. He called their bluff, contested and won.

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The situation is no longer the same today with when Goodluck Jonathan won massively in 2011, these Northern elites have become desperate, impatient and unreasonable as they have been out of power for about six years and this is a very long time politically especially considering the factors at stake. Oil licenses which are majorly in their hands are due for renewal in 2016 and if they do not get someone who has their interest at heart into Aso Rock they fear some of their licenses might not be renewed. Therefore, the battle for 2015 is an all out battle. It must be won either by the shedding of the blood of innocent Nigerians or by Civil War. For them any thing that needs to be done must be done. Since 2009 till date, analyst and onlookers must have observed that Boko Haram seem to have splinted into three main Groups namely; the Shekau Boko Haram, the Criminal Boko Haram and the Political Boko Haram. You will recall the Shekau Boko Haram since 2009 till date try to maintain that they are against Western Education and are fighting a Holy War “Jihad”.[eap_ad_2]


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