In Nigeria of today, the most frequent used words in any gathering, peer group, social event, or any other of sort is without doubt ‘Boko’ and ‘Haram’. These words contrast each other in every respect. ‘Boko’ is traditionally a Hausa word used earlier by the natives to describe the alien form of education brought about by the whites, while ‘Haram’ in itself is an Arabic root word emphasising anything forbidden.
So in essence, why would any sect brand itself, Boko Haram (Western Education Forbidden)? The truth is, the sect Jama’atu Ahlissunna Wal Jama’atu Liddaawati Wal Jihad itself never operated on this coinage, rather it has reiterated times without number that calling them ‘Boko Haram’ is in fact a ‘Haram’ itself. (I wonder if President Jonah really knows the name of the sect he is busy fighting).
Now it is pertinent to ask, who actually labelled them Boko Haram? Or is it the case of the world not knowing Al-Qaida till the CIA actually told us their name and made us believe? Is someone trying to achieve a sinister motive through the continuous terrorisation of the populace? Or who wants to really create panic to divide the nation and what will they achieve with that? These are the questions which answers cannot be justified by any means.
If it is really an Islamic sect, then it is unjustifiable for any Muslim to carry out such menace as the religion of Islam is that of Peace. The position of Islam is that Muslims must at all times; conduct their affairs by mutual consultations and peacefully (Qur’an 42:38). Therefore the issue of Islam has been totally unjustified.
If it’s the government that is sponsoring the violence, then what on earth will the government achieve through the killing of its own citizens? Relief or revenge? But for what purpose? It is true that government establishments have not been attacked anywhere, but does that justify the government will maim its own people?
Now some are of the belief that the hard economic plight and conditions of living had led to the insurgency of this sect. Hard to believe. Was it not just some few years back that we were branded the ‘Happiest Nation’ on Earth, not because we were really satisfied with the way we are living but because of the Nigerian spirit of contentment. So how can we justify that my fellow brother because of poverty will blow himself up together with hundred others. Really unjustified.
The most unjustifiable fact however is the claim of enmity of ‘Boko’ by the sect. If ‘Boko’ is to be taken as western civilisation, then the sect has without doubt benefited from it. The first message of the sect was on You Tube a western creation. The letters sent by the sect are in plain pen and paper and written in ‘Hausan-Boko’ the western way of writing and not in Ajami (the Arabic style) so clearly, ‘Boko’ is part and parcel of the sect itself.
We can continue to beat around the bush without any tangible meaning to this events, because in fact that’s what our so called security chiefs have been doing, beating around the bush, and groping around for what to do only after the deeds have been done, while the President tries to apportion blame to the various axis of his cabinet that he claimed have been infested by the sect but still deems it fit to retain the cabinet with the virus in it.
Therefore unless these questions are appropriately and satisfactorily justified, the real truth will still be lurking in somewhere, while terror takes its toll on the populace, and tensions and conflicts continue to be triggered.