The catastrophic terrorism unleashed by the Islamic sect popularly known as “Boko Haram,” has become a nation-wide concern in Nigeria in recent years. Almost everyday television broadcast, shows, newspapers, magazines and internet websites run and re-run pictures of dramatic acts of violence carried out by this ferocious sect. It is often hard not to be scared when we see gruesome pictures of people killed or maimed by Boko Haram in office buildings, public buses or trains, and on the streets. The federal government seems weak in maintaining law and order in Nigeria and lacks a viable strategy to contain the Islamic sect from carrying out its atrocities. Nigeria seems to meet the criterion of a “failed states” such as Somalia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan and Yemen, where terrorist groups are often able to operate freely, plan sophisticated attacks and stockpile weapons—not because the government officials sponsor them but simply because they lack the political will to bring them to book.
The federal government, with the support of the international community, has launched many initiatives to combat the threat posed by Boko Haram. Indeed, considerable amount of money and political capital have been invested in new and continuing programmes to enhance security and contain the threat of Boko Haram in Nigeria. Although, these and other efforts are worthy of support, it is not obvious that they reflect any clear ordering of priorities, or that they are being implemented with a sense of urgency. In order to correct this situation, this paper explores the issue of Boko Haram catastrophic terrorism in Nigeria, taking an in depth look at the historical legacy, institutions, conditions and contexts as well as the challenges posed by this trend against sustainable development. This discourse sums up the recommendations motivated by national synergy to effectively address the monstrous threat posed by Boko Haram to national peace, security and sustainable...
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