Behind the rise of Boko Haram

Islamist militancy in Nigeria is being strengthened by western and regional fossil fuel interests

The kidnapping of over 200 Nigerian school girls, and the massacre of as many as 300 civilians in the town of Gamboru Ngala, by the militant al-Qaeda affiliated group, Boko Haram, has shocked the world.

But while condemnations have rightly been forthcoming from a whole range of senior figures from celebrities to government officials, less attention has been paid to the roots of the crisis.

“…poor responses to climatic shifts create shortages of resources such as land and water. Shortages are followed by negative secondary impacts, such as more sickness, hunger, and joblessness. Poor responses to these, in turn, open the door to conflict.”

“It has become a pattern; we saw it happen in 2006; it happened again in 2008 and in 2010. If you remember, President (Olusegun) Obasanjo had to deploy the military in 2006 to Yobe State, Borno State and Katsina State. These are some of the states bordering Niger Republic and today they are the hotbeds of the Boko Haram.”

“Oil reserves are dropping, our output is dropping too… We need to do more in this regards to have more reserves. We have reached the plateau of production in the Niger Delta and we are already going down.”

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