Nigeria's Islamist Twist
While many people say September 11 is a date that will last in infamy in the American calendar, the reality of the 21st century generation is that the carnage of terrorism is reshaping human existence. The bloodletting, destruction and relentless attacks by terrorist network across the globe is, need I say shocking.
While world leaders keep gathering each year to discuss economics, world politics and the balance of power out of a weariness to avoid a 3rd world war now or in the future, the fight against the ravages of terrorism is still very much segmented and lack well co-ordinated global efforts. As the western world with better technological capabilities are giving it all it takes to defeat or at least to stop the terrorist in their tracks, the developing and un-developed world is quickly becoming the save haven and the center of destruction for terrorist Lords and ragtag killing squad.
Just 5years ago, a suicide bomb attacks was completely alien to my home country Nigeria, it’s something you would always want to think can never happen in Nigeria no matter how extreme people would want to go with their extremist believes. Fast forward to today, the sad story is that suicide bombs and extremist attacks has become a rampant occurrences in Northern Nigeria in the last few years,months,weeks and even days.
The numbers of horrid slaughtering of many innocents souls especially young children and woman in most part of North Eastern Nigeria has jolted me to the reality that this evil now stares us as a nation, eye ball to eye ball. With the myriad of bloody attacks, it now seems that with every attack the extremist are now lodged in various pockets across many parts of the North, not just the North East. These merciless killers are getting emboldened, far more daring and are forcefully pushing an agenda that I would consider to be beyond extremist Islamization .
It’s a scrabble of extremism, mixed with political evil, wickedness and hate against the current president of Nigeria. While there’s an Islamist twist to these attacks, the timing, frequency and the callous natures of the attacks both from the once with outright claims by Islamist groups, to the ravaging attacks and killing spree by “fulani herdsmen”. It’s now beginning to show one clear target – the unquenchable hatred to discredit the current head of state and cause chaos that would destabilize Nigeria under his watch.
Just before the 2011 general elections ,never before has so many high placed contenders for the presidency of Nigeria from a particular geographic region in Nigeria publicly issued treats just because someone form a much different region/religion is in good stead of contesting and winning the so called seat of power. 2015 is election year, so no surprise that these attacks are on the increase, so much so that very few but naive Nigerian are calling for a Military coup. To me this is just out right nonsense, a coup will complicate Nigeria problems, set this country back another 20years and worst case scenario result in another Civil war and am very such even the military know this.
Though the typical acts of terror in the north is senseless and theorists would link this to many reason e.g. political, economic hardship, religious domination etc, other forms and no more less disturbing face of terror still does exist across the west, south and east of Nigeria.
Only just recently there were gruesome discoveries of dungeons used in holding people captives and doubling as human butcher house, the shock of these discoveries only gets amplified in the sense that though this was not the 1st of its kind to happen, but the fact that the recent discoveries made in the Western part of Nigeria from two different states all happened just one week apart.
The ragging madness of shocking crimes seems to be spinning out of control, from numerous types and shades of kidnapping, to so called baby factories (where young women are held in captivity, impregnated forced to give birth and the babies sold off), to violent armed robberies, gangs and cult clashes, armed crude oil thieves and finally the so called militants masquerading as freedom fighters.
The figures of deaths leaves you in utter disbelieve that the sacred value placed on human life is being so quickly eroded. The humanity of man in this conner of the world is changing every day and sadly it’s changing for the worse. The chills of all the news of blood shades ,and man’s cruelty seems to be creating a ripple of negative waves that is spreading so fast that news you now hear often are news of sorrows ,tears, and pain.
How has this become? And how can this be evil trend by reversed as rapidly as its been growing? can Nigerian government and its people clogged the wheels of terror, criminality and sheer wickedness?
Question, question, questions. As person of faith and one not engulfed in religiosity – I see the solutions streaming from a multifaceted approach and of these approaches the rejigging of both human and spiritual efforts must be at the forefront.
Human efforts: This is directly vested on the government of the Nigerian state-The state has invested tremendously in its security apparatus [military, police, secret service and paramilitary agents], the state’s level of intelligence for national security purposes if not known or has its strength been rally assessed by the average Nigerians, at least up until now. Citizen apathy has always been inherent in the Nigerian attitude to both national issues and sadly too to personal or community security. If my assumptions that there’s a political twist to the Islamist attacks happening mainly up north are correct, then as the days go by and the general elections for 2015 draws closer these attacks will be stirred up with far more daring attacks than ever.
|President Goodluck Jonathan|
The push to discredit this present president has largely failed despite the huge number of senseless deaths and destruction unleashed on Nigerians, how far the terror groups and their backers are willing to go, if and when the current president declares an intention to seek re-election is a question security agencies and every peace loving Nigerian must be seeking answers to now and acting ahead of time to fortify and defend this country. Hence I ask the question have we not seen enough carnage for we to wake up? or we want to wait till there’s a Sept 11 type of carnage? ,God Forbid ! – the government must be sincere in it approach to fighting terrorism, criminality and dispensing of justice , this sincerity will engender more and more citizen participation in the fight against terror and all forms of criminality
Spiritual efforts: This is one challenge, that leaders of the religious faiths must lead. While many would describe Nigerians as “religious people” it seems sometimes that religion has always played a role in some of the bloodletting experienced in the country especially in the North. However, the essence of true faith is the undisputable believe in a holy God, and that to everything that exist in the physical, there is a spiritual angle to it , as a Christian the Bible records that “For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds”
|Prayer Changes Things|
2 Corinthians 10:4 in today’s English the verse sounds like this The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. God is a being, in the spirit, we may not see a physical being but faith hold us to a believe that God exist, religion is a pathway for many to find a God they chose to believe in, that’s why religion can be twisted, but true faith in God cant be. As a Christian, Faith in God through Christ Jesus is the true essence of my existence and its way beyond religion. That’s why I believe that Christians must know and see that in this war on terror and unspeakable evil in Nigeria, we have a common enemy that is non denomination in its attacks or care what color of robe you wear to church on Sunday.
Our faith gives us a weapon far potent than a nuclear bomb, our faith gives us hope beyond what the most dreadful enemy can imagine, think or even do – our faith must lead us in to the battle of prayers, unity more than ever before, a collective will of the leaders in the faith to speak out and lead Gods people as in the days of the prophets.
While I can’t speak for people of other faith, I also will not speak against them, but what I can say is this “Any man that hold his own faith to be true even if he is not a Christian must stand up using the principle of his faith to war against this evil, because its either you are fighting against this evil or you are fighting on the side of this evil.”