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Boko Haram Continues To Drive Terrorism Threat In Northern Nigeria
Control Risks Contributor
By Gillian Parker
Despite all efforts from the Nigerian government, and support by surrounding states, Boko Haram in northern Nigeria is far from defeated. This was proven once more on June 17, when at least 31 people were killed in explosions in the Damboa local government area (LGA) of Borno state.
Sub-Saharan Africa has suffered greatly under the increase of Islamist militant attacks. The number of incidents rose from 317 in 2013 to 1,549 for the period April 2017 to April 2018, according to Control Risks’ report Changing patterns in the terrorist threat to business. In West Africa, where 36% of the incidents were reported, Nigeria suffered most (220 incidents), followed by Mali (194) and Cameroon (96). While not all incidents can be attributed to Boko Haram, the continued strengths of the extremists group is now starting to turn the public opinion against President Muhammadu Buhari.
Buhari is likely to announce further efforts to combat Boko Haram in the coming months as he seeks to fulfill his 2015 election pledge to end the insurgency—But success is unlikely. Military efforts to prevent further Boko Haram attacks in the coming months are hugely challenged by the sheer size of the territory in which the group operates and its continued ability to launch attacks.
Ongoing corruption issues will further undermine efforts to defeat the group. Significant resources have been diverted towards military efforts. Nigeria’s state governors in December 2017 approved the withdrawal of $1 billion from the excess crude account to combat Boko Haram through the purchase of equipment, training of military personnel and provision of logistical support. However, there have been several cases of officials siphoning off funds and resources meant for the region.