Now that Boko Haram is deadlier than ISIS

According to the Global Terrorism Index, Boko Haram caused 6,644 deaths in 2014, overtaking the Islamic State (ISIS) which claimed 6,073 lives within the same period.

Abubakar Shekau

Boko Haram is now the world’s deadliest terrorist organization.

According to the Global Terrorism Index, the Nigerian sect caused 6,644 deaths in 2014, overtaking the Islamic State (ISIS) which claimed 6,073 lives within the same period.

According to the report, Nigeria has witnessed a 300 per cent rise in deaths from terror acts to 7,512 over the past one year largely due to Boko Haram’s expansion.

Boko Haram pledged its allegiance to ISIS in March 2015 and is now known as the Islamic State’s West’s Africa Province (ISWAP).

The sect was formed in 2002 but was relatively harmless until it became a many-headed monster in 2010 and started to carry out sophisticated attacks.

Boko Haram has become a menace to Nigeria, West Africa and the world and this is because its activities were not effectively combatted until it was too late.

Former President Goodluck Jonathan lived in virtual denial of Boko Haram and only stepped up the war against the sect towards the end of his tenure to boost his chances of re-election.

Investigations by the government of current President Muhammadu Buhari have also shown that money meant for fighting the sect was misappropriated by officials in charge, one of whom is Nigeria’s former National Security Adviser (NSA), Sambo Dasuki.

Dasuki is accused of diverting up to N337 billion worth of funds meant for arming Nigeria’s soldiers.

This was disclosed on Tuesday, November 17, 2015, via a statement released by Buhari’s spokesperson, Femi Adesina.

“…Payments to the tune of N3,850,000,000.00 were made to a single company by the former NSA without documented evidence of contractual agreements or fulfillment of tax obligations to the Federal Government of Nigeria,” Adesina said.

“Further findings revealed that between March 2012 and March 2015, the erstwhile NSA, Lt. Col. MS Dasuki (rtd) awarded fictitious and phantom contracts to the tune of N2,219,188,609.50,  $1,671,742,613.58 and €9,905,477.00,” he added.

According to Adesina, “thousands of needless Nigerian deaths would have been avoided” if the money had been properly spent.

Adesina said further that Buhari had ordered the arrest of Dasuki and other persons who had been indicted by the investigative panel set up to look into the country’s arms deals between 2007-2015.

In his defence, Dasuki wondered why only his name was mentioned despite the fact that he had been appointed as NSA in 2012.

“Only my name has been mentioned even when some of the issues were before I came into the government. I leave Nigerians to judge,” the former NSA said in a statement issued in response to the order for his arrest.

“For the record I am proud to have served my nation with the best of intentions and ensured the recovery of more than 22 local government councils from Boko Haram terrorists,” he added.

The fact that funds allocated for the terror fight were not being properly used was also confirmedby former Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Kenneth Minimah after he was removed by Buhari.

“The insurgency snowballed into a graver dimension because these people exploited the security challenge to further sectional, religious and political interests,” Minimah said adding that the government had toyed with the health and vitality of the military through inadequate funding.

Some Nigerian soldiers had earlier told The Associated Press that they were sent to fight terrorists with just 30 bullets each and no food. Whenever the soldiers dared to complain, they were punished and sometimes dismissed.

It’s unconscionable that anyone, any human with an actual heart, would steal money meant for war.

The fact that hundreds of Nigerian soldiers were sent to face certain death due to the greed of a few is a damning judgment on the entire country.

Boko Haram’s new status as the world’s deadliest terrorist group is proof that the Nigerian government did next to nothing to stop the sect’s growth and by starving the army, essentially aided its expansion.

Buhari has promised to right the wrongs done by the previous administration but who will account for all the lives that have been lost?

Who will explain to the mothers, wives and children of our dead soldiers that their loved ones died needlessly for a country to which their lives meant nothing?

May the souls of all the Nigerians we have lost to Boko Haram rest in peace.

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Watch video of Goodluck Jonathan saying Boko Haram didn't start with him below:

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