Posted by: zebbook | May 30, 2012

BOKO HARAM: Metamorphosis of the Goodluck years

BOKO HARAM: Metamorphosis of the Goodluck years

The instinct to kill is as common as the need to procreate. All that is needed is an excuse.

An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind. — Mahatma Gandhi


Let me paint you a picture, or two, or three. It really depends on how good you are when counting.

Adamu is the only son of his parents, a muslim by birth and he has gone to the islamic school where he stood out in scholarly endeavours. He decided to continue his education by enrolling in the university and earn for himself the “best of both worlds”, which would help him positively touch his world. He was on the right path (or so it seemed).

During one of the semester breaks, he decided to visit an uncle residing in Abuja (hoping to be few Naira richer when going back to school). He got to Abuja safely and was admiring the various gigantic structures when it HIT, nobody knew what was happening -only that there was this stench of burning skins and hairs that permeates the air.

Adamu noticed that people surrounded him, he could barely move any of his extremities, one of his eyes couldn’t even function again and the other one was seeing blurred images of faintly formed human figures running around aimlessly. He died few minutes later.

Quasim was born in a family of seven in Maiduguri, they are poor and lack the basic necessities of life. Education was a no-go area as the government hardly encouraged it. So, when faced with life on the sidelines he decided to make his own path, he took to commercial motorcycling helping someone ride and eventually getting a daily allowance to help pay his bills. He was happy with the arrangement.

One of those days when he couldn’t get a “customer’ on time, he decided to relax on his motorbike and discuss the little national issue he understood with friends(even, if barely). Tragedy struck when it HIT, there was the shrieking sound of people burning and several other dead bodies around – some missing several parts – mostly unrecognizable due to the callous nature of the attack. He survived for a few hours before succumbing.


BOKO HARAM: I’ll paint one more picture!

Late last year President Jonathan was quoted as saying “some of them are in the executive arm of government, some of them are in the parliamentary/legislative arm of government, while some of them are in the judiciary”. He went further, saying “some are also in the armed forces, the police and other security agencies”

Of course, he was talking about “Jama’atu Ahlis Sunna Lidda’awati wal-Jihad”, which in Arabic means “People Committed to the Propagation of the Prophet’s Teachings and Jihad” loosely termed as “Boko Haram” by the press and the general populace in Nigeria.


Practicing one’s religion is never a crime (be it Christianity, Islam, Hindu, Traditional religion etc). Choosing to practice it a different way compared to others is NOT a crime by any means either. It becomes a crime when you force it on people and maim them in a bid for them to “see it your way”. Its also not a crime to have security challenges in a nation, the crime comes from the authority being two-faced about a solution – playing the blame game rather than finding a lasting solution to the problems. Going by the earlier quotes, you understand where I stand.

What really baffles me in Boko Haram’s case is that it is now termed as an anti southern Nigeria force, mainly in existence because we have a southern president. As a southerner myself, I see this as one of the most idiotic classification of a National security challenge. If that classification is correct, the only solution would be for the president to step down and Vamoose……everything is settled! Right?



There are pertinent questions that ought be asked, and answered by the government!

*Who are these Boko Haram?

*What are their agitations?

*Are they a pressure group or terrorists?

*Who are those behind this national scourge?

*What are we going to do to combat this scourge?

*Is our security apparatus/intelligence network up to the task?

*What alternative do we have in dealing with them?


People normally assume the big and extravagantly worded questions should be the norm, I believe in the basic because knowing what you’re dealing with gives you the idea of how to combat it. Our President would rather point it out that they are everywhere rather than work on resolving the situation itself.

These decisions are not easy, but President Jonathan knew that before spending heaven and earth to become president. Its time to let us know why he is our PRESIDENT.


On this tribal outlook everyone seem to jump on, I have this to say:

*Who are the major casualties of Boko Haram (North or south)?

*Were these attacks limited to churches or southerners alone?

*Are these perpetrators northerners only?

*When was Boko Haram formed and to what purpose?

*What happened to prominent Islamic clerics that spoke out against them?


There are many more posers going through your head right now, yeah? Right!

If the president and his cabinet can answer these basic “primary school composed” questions, we will be on a path to redemption.

But NO!

Our President is not sincere about securing our lives, he is not bothered about those tenets spelt out in the constitution. He definitely has his own agenda: making Boko Haram about himself. He is so right, Nigeria was created for him, Electricity has been so bad in his tenure because there is a conspiracy to fault him, corruption is so rampant because we want to abuse him. We protested fuel subsidy removal because we don’t like him, the economy is down because GEJ has to be blamed. Our budget has a low performance level because there is a southerner at the helm of our affairs.

The earlier we let President Jonathan know that Boko Haram was formed in 1992, the better. If those knuckle heads in his security team are so daft to the extent of not knowing where Boko Haram fits in, we should educate him. Can we inform our president that Boko Haram really sprung into semi-action during Yar’Adua’s (a northerner) tenure and that the police summary execution of Mohammed Yusuf (BH Leader) took things to an uncontrollable state and the destruction of his mosque / homes led to huge resentments among his followers.


Looking through the stories here ( you’ll understand what we’ve been dealing with all these years, our President should understand that Boko Haram was never about him. His indecisiveness in charting a course is what is killing us. The evident corruption in his government further infuriates all and sundry, we hardly see past the 1million naira cassava bread budget per day sometimes. we don’t pity him because he was elected to make these decisions – we have to remind him that he fought tooth and nail to get there.

Here is the time that all well meaning Nigerians should come together, speak with one voice and let our President know he is not doing enough to alleviate poverty, insecurity, joblessness, our fears of tomorrow, rot in education sector, corruption, indecisiveness…..etc.

We should let him know the national broadcast on May 29 was watery at best and lacks the necessary framework of a soothing tool. How will food get to our table? Hunger makes people violent. How are we going to have a sustainable educational sector? When people lack basic knowledge, they follow whoever shows them a path. How do we fight corruption? Subsidy, Power, Capital Market scams are still unattended to.  How do we have a sustainable economy? Borrowing for a few to loot breeds anger and violence. How do we stop Boko Haram? Making it about your presidency is a lie and solves nothing at all.

Its incredible how Boko Haram has metamorphosized into “anti-Jonathan” from that group that was fighting during Yar’Adua’s tenure. They’ve moved from “people killing northerners and southerners” to a group established to fight the President.

We have to let Mr President know that the metamorphosis of Boko Haram in these past year is suspicious and we won’t stop until he is decisive enough to address it.


God bless Nigeria and happy “civilian rule” celebration.



Adebowale Adejugbe

You can follow him on twitter @deboadejugbe



  1. On spot sir #Gbam Jonathan ehn, a man that pays attention to frivolities… avoids the important! So terrible! God help Nigeria.

  2. Debo, you write so well. Damn! This is very insightful.

  3. […] BOKO HARAM: Metamorphosis of the Goodluck years ( […]

  4. It is a pity that it s common man that suffers his mediocre leadership the most. Thanks for this different insight.

  5. Breathtakingly concise take on the Boko Haram issue and our dear president’s response (read lack of) to the dire situation. This lack of response can only be deemed deliberately debilitating. Under President Jonathan’s watch, Nigeria became a confirmed terrorist state.

    Something has to give.

  6. Concise, Brilliantly delivered and quite compelling if one were taking a simplistic view of the situation we now face. Yes the economy is in disarray – as usual, Yes corruption is rife – as usual, Yes the organisation now known as Boko Haram may have been formed pre GEJ.

    I am sure what Nigerians would love to see is a situation similar to what the American Presidents have done in their bid to build their economy and tackle corruption and defeat terrorism (Al-Qaeda) in the American situation. To paint a parallel picture…Just as Bill Clinton Order Bombing attacks on specific Al-Qaeda targets after the East -African American Embassy bombing… GEJ should (Please conclude). As George Bush attacked Iraq and entered war in Afghanistan after 9/11, GEJ should (Please conclude) .

    One of the major problems we have as a nation is the tendency for us to look at other nations around the world and begin to engage in direct comparism, always asking why, why can we not have governments as functional and as efficient in the delivery of basics…why do we not have a country where corruption is low (There are no corruption free countries in the world).

    The answer to these questions is that Nigeria by nature of its make up is extremely diverse, and that diversity unfortunately makes for a very complex socio-political environment. Like a fabric, diverse thread colours can create an extremely rich fabric if woven “tightly” together….question is: Are we woven tightly together?

    Our history and the path that has thus led us, reflects our diversity. The 1963 Kaduna Nzeogwu coup created a ripple of events based on interpretations conditioned by that diversity setting us firmly on a path as a Nation. In recent times. The spate of bombings in the North led the Federal Government to deploy a JTF as a counter measure. Some incidents involving the JTF and loss of life was categorically declared an act of genocide by a prominent Northern voice on Twitter who has well over 70 thousand followers…..(Please conclude).

    Just as Boko Haram pre dates GEJ so does Corruption and an Economy that defies the basic rules and delivers a solid slap to common sense…. Yes he has a responsibility as the President of Our Great Nation to stand up and face these problems….we also on our part have a responsibility as Nigerians to support him in the solution of these problems.

    GEj is only one amongst 150 million plus people. I see him as first amongst equals…. We all have a responsibility towards NIGERIA. The Al-Qaeda / Osama / Afghanistan situation goes some way in supporting what GEJ claims about people who subscribe to and support Boko Haram in government at different levels.

    We all must first be NIGERIANS in the way we see and approach our country. Fighting Corruption, Our Economic Well being and Security is our collective responsibility. We must not only be joined in our voice, but also in our ACTION to move Nigeria forward. I should not be worried by the tribal origin of the occupier of Aso Rock….my main concern should be the fact that they are the best for my country and they will do the BEST for Nigeria.

    Secondly, We as a people have the power to make changes. come next election let us ensure that no person in any position that has not performed gets a re election. Let us ensure that no member of the National assembly is returned if they do not review downwards the stupendous amount it costs us….


    Conclusively, Whatever you deposit in Nigeria is what Nigeria gives back to you.

  7. This is superb,well documented and highly philosophical. It kinda brings to mind lots of what ifs. Unfortunately, if we have laid our beds this way as a nation, must we sleep on it like that?…everyone is complaining AND things are getting worst! The more I hear about BH, the more i ponder if we are getting any closer to freedom.

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