News / Africa

Boko Haram Tag Undermines Nigeria Peace Efforts, Say ‘Elders’

Suspected Boko Haram militants detained by military in Bukavu Barracks, Kano state, Nigeria, March 2012 file photo.
Suspected Boko Haram militants detained by military in Bukavu Barracks, Kano state, Nigeria, March 2012 file photo.
Peter Clottey
Nigeria’s Northern Elder’s Forum says the designation of Boko Haram as a terrorist organization undermines President Goodluck Jonathan’s efforts to resolve the country’s internal security crisis.

Ango Abdullahi, spokesman for the Elders’ forum says Mr. Jonathan has shown good intensions to resolve the security challenges the country faces peacefully. But, his efforts, Abdullahi says would be thwarted by the official designation of Boko Haram and its suspected splinter group Ansaru as outlawed terrorist organizations.

“The quality of advice that the president should be getting on some of the very sensitive issues of national security, peace and stability in the country, I don’t think the quality of advice lives up to the standards that it ought to be,” said Abdullahi.

But Jonathan’s advisers, Abdullahi said, will be to blame if the security crisis worsens.

Abdullahi’s comments came after the administration declared Boko Haram and its suspected splinter group, Ansaru, to be outlawed terrorist organizations. The terrorist designation allows the government to impose prison sentences of a minimum of 20 years on group members or supporters.

Abdullahi said issuing the terrorist designation indicates the government is no longer interested in negotiating with the militant group to end the violence in parts of the country.

“Once they declared a group as a terrorist organization, it then precludes the possibility of ever sitting with them in any discussions, let alone negotiations,” continued Abdullahi, “particularly if most of these people are in hiding, they don’t even want to be identified or recognized. It takes certain palliatives and persuasions, and so on, to eventually bring them out. But if you are introducing obstacles there is nothing to deal with.”

Jonathan recently established a Committee on Reconciliation and Dialogue to hold talks with the Islamic sect to end the violence often carried out by Boko Haram in parts of the country.

“So the next thing that we expect to hear from the president is that he has disbanded the Committee on Reconciliation and Dialogue. That should be the logical sequence of events,” said Abdullahi.

He says both the state of emergency declared in three northern states and the designation of Boko Haram as a terrorist organization will complicate attempts to finding solutions to the security crisis.

Boko Haram, based in Nigeria’s north, has been accused of carrying out violent attacks in an attempt to force the country to adopt strict Islamic law.

Human Rights Watch says Boko Haram-related violence has killed an estimated 3,000 people since 2009, a toll that includes killings by security forces.
Clottey interview with Prof. Ango Abdullahi, spokesman for NEF
Clottey interview with Prof. Ango Abdullahi, spokesman for NEFi
|| 0:00:00
...    
🔇
X

You May Like

Arab League Delays Forming Joint Force

Delay grows out of one of original obstacles facing pan-Arab force, analysts say: 'They may agree on the principle, but they continue to argue about how to implement the project' More

Pakistan Demands Afghanistan Protect Its Kabul Mission, Staff

Officials in Islamabad say Afghan agents are harassing Pakistani embassy personnel, particularly those living outside of mission’s compound More

US Survey: Trump Lead Grows in Republican Presidential Contest

Quinnipiac University poll shows brash billionaire real estate mogul with 28 percent support among Republican voters More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Ejeta from: Warri
June 06, 2013 12:30 AM
Prof Ango Abdullahi is a confused personality. He call himself an elder but I choose to call him a juvenile old man. I sincerely believe from all his utterances so far as a BOko Haram sponsor and supporter. When Churches and UN premises were deliberately destroyed and thousands killed, he never speak out to condemn them. He is only interested in purportedly speaking for a group to attract "notice me" mentality. He is a failure both as a Vice Chancellor and an agriculturalist and adviser.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalatesi
X
August 27, 2015 2:08 AM
Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Is China's Economic Data Accurate?

Some investors say China's wild stock market gyrations have been made worse by worries about the reliability of that nation's economic data. And some critics say the reports can mislead investors by painting an unrealistically-strong picture of the economy. A key China scholar says Beijing is not fudging ((manipulating)) the numbers, but that the economy is evolving quickly from smoke-stack industries to services, and the ways of tracking new economic activity are falling behind the change. V
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Shipping Containers Provide Experimental Housing

Housing prices around the San Francisco Bay area are out of reach for many people, so some young entrepreneurs, artists and tech industry workers are creating their own houses using converted shipping containers. But as VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports from Oakland, the effort requires ingenuity and dealing with restrictive local laws.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video Technique May Eliminate Drill-and-Fill Dental Care

Many people dread visiting dentists because they're afraid of drills. Now, however, a technology developed by a British firm promises to eliminate the need for mechanical cleaning of dental cavities by speeding a natural process of tooth repair. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.
Video

Video French Experiment in Integrating Roma Under Threat

Plans to destroy France’s oldest slum have sparked an outcry on the part of its Roma residents. As Lisa Bryant reports from the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, rights groups argue the community is a fledgling experiment on integrating Roma who are often outcasts in many parts of Europe.
Video

Video Kenyans Turn to Agriculture for Business

Each year Kenyan universities continue to churn out graduates for the job market despite the already existing high rate of unemployment among youth in the country. Some of these young men and women have realized that agriculture can be as rewarding as any other business or job, and they are resorting to agribusiness in large numbers as a way of tackling unemployment. Rael Ombuor reports for VOA.
Video

Video First Women Graduate Elite Army Ranger School

Two women are making history for the U.S. Army by proving they are among the toughest of the tough. VOA's Carla Babb reports from Fort Benning, Georgia as 94 men and those two women rise as graduates of the difficult Ranger school.

VOA Blogs