Poverty adds to religious violence. Inspite of Nigeria’s gigantic resources, which if they were invested admirablecould enhance the lives of the general population, the nation remains tormentedby high rates of poverty, economic dissimilarity, restricted educationalopportunities, and mass joblessness? A combination of the bad economic, socialand political state of the country had given a rich domain to Boko Haram. Theseincorporate the embarrassingly high-level corruption in the country and poverty(which is more serious in huge parts of the north than in different parts ofthe nation) as left many in the region hopeless (spiraling violence; 2012). Closeto 95% Nigerian population believe the Nigerian government is corrupt (Anyadike;19). In spite of the fact that the economic problems are not limited to thenorth alone, the Northern piece of Nigeria, where Muslims shape the largerpopulation, is most intensely affected.
The accessible data uncover that verynearly 70% of the general population in Northern parts of the nation lives onless than one dollar daily when contrasted with half and 59% over the Southernzones. This leads to the conclusion that the persistent high level of povertyin the country is more a northern phenomenon that could be responsible for themilitancy in that region. From a more extensive viewpoint, youngadults in the north have no way or method to cope with the gruesome economicstate in the country, may swing to the sect for comfort. This could thuslyrender them more powerless embracing extremist religious perspectives.
Numerous data available contend that thepossibility of the Boko Haram isn’t just about dismissing Western instructionas such, yet it is additionally a judgment about the inability to giveopportunities to the general public. This inclination by the general populationtherefore turns into favorable position for the Boko Haram development who utilizesit as an instrument for activating and radicalizing the jobless and unskilledyoung people to join its cause against the state. The Boko Haram sect isintelligently situated as an option and conceivable solution to their problems.The group uses religion as an instrument to slander fellow Muslims working foror supporting the state (Umar; 32)The development of the group could beidentified with the development of Islamist extremist sects in the area. Before,the turn of the century there was no “Islamists terrorist organizations”in Sub-Saharan Africa.
One can argue that some terrorist activities took placethe groups weren’t considered extremist sects The circumstance is that numerousindigenous terrorist associations have begun and keep on operating in bothstrong and weak nations. The Al Shabab is extremely operstional in Somalia andKenya, while Boko Haram and AQIM keep on operating in Nigeria and Mali. These regionsshape what some refer to as the “arc of instability” or unsteadiness in Africa,The biggest al-Qaeda network in East Africa was revealed in Kenya. Mali, a stablenation was as of late destabilized by the Al Qaeda assemble that took controlof the whole northern piece of the nation.
Additionally, after the ousting ofthe Libyan regime weapons and fighters used in the Libyan civil war have moveddown to the countries in the Sahel, including Nigeria (Umar; 34) CONCLUSIONScholars have attributed different factors andreasons to the rise of Boko Haram terrorist sect, most of which are in syncwith reasons attributed to the rise of Islamist extremist terrorist Organizationsin other parts of the world. However, there is a peculiarity about the Bokoharam sect. Mohammed and Haruna in the book Paradox of Bokoharam examines the sect’s objection to western culture; particularly westerneducation, which has served as the Raison deter’ for their actions. Therejection of and opposition to Western culture is a phenomenon often used byterrorist organizations around the world to gain support and win sympathy fromthe largely uninformed public. The terrorist groups often hammer on theperceived dangers presumably inherent in the Western culture and the dangers itposes to Islam in convincing and recruiting members. Nevertheless, availabledata on Boko haram’s first leader and founder Mohammed Yusuf clearly controvertthe so-called hatred to western philosophy and ideology, which they claimsought to discourage the ethics of Islam, especially the claim that westerncivilization was poison to Islam and that it contradicts the principles of theIslamic Faith. However, available facts on Mohammed Yusuf revealed that henever practiced what he preached; his children attended western styled schools.He founded the Almajiri Schools (The Islamicschools for children on the streets) but never enrolled his kids into any ofthem; as he lived a lavish life style in stupendous wealth.
In a nutshell, Mohammed Yusuf lived a westernlife style. Perhaps one may then ask; was Mohammed Yusuf really against westerncivilization or did he employ his campaign as a means to enrich himself?It is on record that Mohammed Yusuf wasn’tborn into a privileged family, never attended primary or high school but becamerich by preaching hate sermons against western civilization. One may thenassert that he merely employed his anti-west stance to empower himself in thefirst instance before he developed other ideas.Secondly, Abdulmalik. ET.Al in PsychoactiveSubstance Use Among Children in Informal Religious Schools (Almajiris) in NorthernNigeria and Salam,A.
O. (2011) Social Conditions andCriminality. Vulnerable Children and Youth Studies examine theeducational disparities between the north and the south as the core cause tothe rise and spread of Boko haram. This position may be hard to justify; it ispertinent to know that illiteracy in the northern part is the highest in theNation Nigeria. This is however not substantial enough to generate breedingground for extreme radical Islamic terrorism such as Boko Haram. As northern Nigerialong before colonialism had established institutions for education andgovernment which has worked their favor and has seen them dominate thepolitical and economic sphere in Nigeria more than any other ethnic group.
This brings me to the thrust research that is the Origin, Riseand Spread of Boko haram in northeast Nigeria which is Poverty. Despite Nigeria’s vast human and Natural resources, it hasto a large extent failed to improve the standard of living for the ordinarycitizens; thus poverty rate among the ordinary Nigerians has remainedunbearably high across the nation and even much worse in the north whereilliteracy rate is highest and opportunities for decent economic survival arefew and far between. To my mind, the dictum, “A hungry man isan angry man” is a truth for all times and most relevant here, and this iswhere the blame rests squarely on bad Governance and poor management ofNigeria’s Commonwealth. Nigerians don’t see things getting better, but rather,Religion offers this hope be it Christianity or Islam, people often turn toReligion for the hope of a better tomorrow, that a supreme being will in oneway or the other come to their aid. It is a known fact that abject povertyleads to frustration and anger. Thus, with no silver-lining or any visible rayof hope that the life of the vast majority of the people could experience anyreasonable positive change, it was obvious that the people who aretraditionally religious will soon sink into bigotry.
This brings to mind thedefinition of religion as the opium of the people by Karl Marx.Therefore, it is apt to posit that at the rootof the rise of Boko haram was poverty. A highly denigrated, highlyimpoverished, and obviously neglected people watched helplessly as their lifedegenerated rapidly with no ray of hope in sight. The people became like theproverbial drowning man who would hold on to anything for support.
Boko haramfounders saw an opportunity in the situation, exploited it and swayed thehelpless people on their side with the promise that Allah would meet theirneeds in Al Jannah, which the Government could not meet here on earth. We mustbear in mind, that to the absolutely helpless, a tiny ray of hope is betterthan no hope at all.