Boko Haram Disgrace: Urgency for Renewal and Reform in northern Nigeria supported by the Muslim Leadership

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Daud AbdulFattah Batchelor


The infamous Boko Haram sect erupted on the world stage in 2009 with their aim to establish an Islamic State. Since its subsequent radicalisation resulting from heavy-handed treatment – including torture and murder – at the hands of state security forces, it now targets the army, police, and those associated with propagating western education. It has even degenerated into attacking the weakest participants, innocent civilians, especially school children. The most infamous act of Boko Haram was the abduction of nearly 300 female students in April 2014 from a government-run high school in the Christian town of Chibok. Over 70 percent of the girls were Christian, and reportedly a number were forcibly ‘converted’ to Islam. In February, 58 students mainly teenage boys, were burnt to death, shot or had their throats slit in a school attack. The mayhem continues as security forces seem incapable of containing the violence. 2050 people were killed in the first half of 2014 alone. The Paris Summit held in May led to a renewed military push from neighbouring countries with support from the United States, to contain Boko Haram. The Nigerian ‘ulama have condemned Boko Haram’s violence and language of arms as a fitna and cited it as “corruption on the earth” - one of the most serious crimes in Islam.

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