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Peace is an indispensible tool for the stability, progress and achievement of any
nation. However in the quest of such peace, there are bound to be disagreement or
conflict but such may be settled amicably for the interest of the nation, if such
efforts fail it could result into violence or degenerate into terrorism. The difficulty of
defining terrorism is in agreeing on a basis for determining when the use of violence
(directed at whom, by whom, for what ends) is legitimate; therefore the modern
definition of terrorism is controversial. Through several researches carried out it
has been discovered that terrorism doesn’t have an exact definition and it is
particularly difficult to define due to the fact that meanings change within social and
historical context. The change in meaning is as a result of terrorism not being a solid
entity like crime and changes within religious groups, political groups, states and
world at large. This is why some people do not see a problem with it and some
justify acts of terrorism under religious, political beliefs or as an act of liberation.
The term terrorism has spawned heated debates as different scholars often argue
about the meaning of the term, According to Cooper (2001) who first approached
the problem by stating there is “a problem in the problem definition” we can agree
that terrorism is a problem, but we cannot agree on what terrorism is. More
recently Schmid (1992) points to the central issue, terrorism is not a physical entity
that has dimensions to be measured, weighed and analyzed, it is a social construct;
that is terrorism is defined by different people within vacillating social and political
realities and this is a problem. Despite the controversy revolving around the
definition of terrorism the UN SECURITY COUNCIL RESOLUTION 1566(2004)
defined terrorism as criminal acts, including against civilians, committed with the
intent to cause death or serious bodily injury, or taking of hostages, with the
purpose to provoke a state of terror in the general public or in a group of persons or
particular persons, intimidate a population or compel a government or an
international organization to do or to abstain from doing any act. The FBI (Federal
Bureau of Investigation) referred to terrorism, as been the unlawful use of force
or violence against persons or property to intimidate or coerce a government, the
civilian population, or any segment thereof, in furtherance of political or social
objectives. The U.S DEPARTMENT OF DEFENCE also defined terrorism as the
calculated use of violence to include fear; intended coerce or to intimidate
governments or societies in the pursuit of goals that are generally political,
religious, or ideological.
In Nigeria terrorism, which is fast becoming an emerging challenge to national
security. According to Azazi (former NSA) as cited in (obene, 2012) “The Nigerian
nation is not prepared for the spate of violence we are experiencing”. However
research goes ahead to state the fact that there have been several symptoms of
terrorism since time memorial, because according to McNamara (1990, p.17) ‘any
society that seeks to achieve adequate security against the background of acute food
shortage, population explosion, low level of productivity and per capita income, low
technological development, inadequate and insufficient public utilities and chronic
problems of unemployment; (religious intolerance and criminal politicking) has a
false sense of security.
Though Nigeria has remained relatively peaceful for a long period of time, Obene
(2012) argues that the killing of Mr. Dele Giwa, by ‘Letter Bomb in October 1986
marked the beginning of violent killings and the use of improvised explosive devices
(IEDs) in Nigeria. Subsequently, the movement for the advancement of democracy
hijacked a Nigeria airways aircraft in October 1993 following the annulment of Chief
M.K.O Abiola’s presidential election. After this, a vicious bomb blast ripped shed 6 of
Ilorin stadium in August 1994.
Several acts of terrorism have been carried out in Nigeria, organized terrorism
in Nigeria can be traced to the emergence of the Maitatsine group in northern
Nigeria, other terrorism activities which have occurred in Nigeria the general
sectarian violence in Jos (2011), series of bombings and killings in Maiduguri since
2004 till date, the 2010 New Year’s Eve bombing of Mogadishu military cantonment
Mammy Market Abuja, The May 29th 2010 presidential inauguration bombing in
Abuja, the 1st October 2010 bombing in Abuja that disorganized the marking of
Nigeria’s 50th independence anniversary as well as the mammy market bombings in
Bauchi, and Zuba near Abuja in 2011.
Post-April 2011 presidential election violence in the northern parts of Nigeria. April
8th, 2011 Suleja INEC office bombing. May 29th 2011 bombing of social drinking
spots in Maiduguri and Zuba, an outskirt of Abuja. June 16, 2011 Nigeria police force
headquarters bombing in Abuja. August 26th, 2011 bombing of UN house in Abuja.
November 4th, 2011 bombing of Army Task Force Operational, police headquarters
and other government buildings in Damaturu, Yobe State and Maiduguri in Borno
state. Christmas day bombing at St. Theresa catholic church in Madalla near Abuja
on the 25th of December 2011 and most recently the highly publicized kidnapping of
the 230 chibok girls on 14th of April 2014were most of these terrorist acts have
been linked the BOKO HARAM terrorist group. Another notable terrorist activity
that can be recorded in Nigeria is the Niger delta oil crises, were the oil rich Niger
Delta region of Nigeria was embroiled in constant battle between the government
forces and some militant elements that were aggrieved over certain fundamental
issues affecting the region, this battle saw militants constantly fighting the
government forces, sabotaging oil installations, taking foreign oil workers hostage
and carrying out lethal bombings amongst others. It is impossible to say for sure
what causes terrorism, a person’s psychological make-up certainly will play a role,
but to what extent is unclear. Some may come to terrorism, not out of any love for
violence, but rather to further their ideological goals. Others may be motivated to
use terror simply because it appears to be a useful strategic alternative, or may
further the state’s objectives. Indeed, terrorism may occur for psychological,
ideological, and strategic grounds all at once. An individual may decide terrorism
fits his or her own view of the world (that it makes sense). A group may come to use
terrorism because it furthers and is supported by their ideology. Finally, groups or
persons may use terrorism because it fits with their strategic objectives and goals.
Terrorism imposes several effects on societies and will not only lead to direct
material damage but also long term effects most especially on the local economy of
victim states. Effects of terrorism on the economy can be distinguished in into
primary and secondary impacts were activities at the primary level include the
immediate aftermath of terrorist events like physical destruction of urban objects,
the human casualties and losses of life. Survey in France, the republic of Ireland and
the United Kingdom illustrate that terrorist attacks have a negative effect on
reported life satisfaction. Terrorism will not only cause primary economic impact,
but will also produce considerable secondary or indirect impact. The secondary
economic impact is the result of an interdependent economic system in which
terrorist attacks cause disruption of economic entities, which have not been direct
targets of the attack. Terrorism systematically influences tourists choice of
destination and can therefore, substantially negatively affect a host country. The
American economists, Enders and Sandler (1991) for example conclude that a
typical terrorist act in Spain scares away over 140,000 tourists. Moreover, the effect
is long lasting and has also an impact on the demand for tourism in neighboring
countries, It was also concluded by Enders and Sandler (1996) that countries like
Spain and Greece saw their foreign direct investments (FDI) decrease in the period
1975-1991 due to series of terrorist events.
Terrorist events in a particular society not only increases the sense of insecurity and
uncertainty for foreign traders, but will also increase transaction costs due to
augmented security measures can lead to destruction of export goods, Nitch and
Schumacher (2004) illustrate that countries that are targeted by terrorism, will
trade less with each other than countries not affected by terrorism.
Nigeria, which is one of the most populous country in Africa, has been under various
terrorist attack for a long time now with no ideal solution been carried out and this
is affecting the country negatively. Boko Haram meaning “Western education is
forbidden”, one of the most popular terrorist group in Nigeria made its presence
known in 2004 in Yobe state and by 2011 it made its presence known to the global
community by bombing the United Nations headquarters in Abuja. Over the years it
has willfully attacked hundreds of buildings and killed many innocent Nigerians
with an estimated kill of more than 5,000 civilians between July 2009 and June
2014, including at least 2,000 in the first half of 2014. These attacks have been
concentrated mainly in northeast, north-central and central Nigeria. Since 2009
Boko Haram have abducted more than 500 men, women and children, topping its
exploits on April 14th 2014, with the abduction of more than 230 Chibok secondary
school girls and is still holding them in spite of much-touted international
collaboration to rescue them and no one knowing the faith of those girls returning.
These terrorist activities that have been going on for a long time now and is having
an effect on the national economy, a lot has been deployed for eradicating this
problem increasing death rate and making citizens strangers in their own country.
The main purpose for this study is to investigate the war against terrorism in
Nigeria since 2010. In addition, this study is expected to achieve the following
specific objectives.
 To understudy the history of terrorism in Nigeria
 To analyze the level of terrorism in Nigeria
 To find out the major factor(s) that promote terrorism
 To assess the effectiveness of efforts applied by the Nigerian government to
curb terrorism since 2010.
 To certify the implications of terrorism on the Nigerian society
 What is the history of terrorism in Nigeria?
 What is the level of terrorism in Nigeria?
 What is the major factor(s) that promote terrorism?
 How effective are efforts made by Nigeria to tackle terrorism?
 What are the implications of terrorism on the Nigerian society?
This research will be of significant value to the government, the society, scholars
and the international community.
The government will benefit tremendously from the results of this study in the
sense that it will expose them to the various causes of terrorism and also put
forward some recommendations, which could serve to prevent such occurrence in
the future. If the recommendations provided by the study are properly implemented
it will go a long way in reducing the incidence of terrorism to the barest minimum.
This study if carried out properly will also be very beneficial to the society in such a
way that it will add to the pool of data on terrorism in Nigeria and also educate
individuals of the society on the level of terrorism in Nigeria.
It will also be relevant to the international community as it will offer other nations
of Africa and the world an in-depth analysis of what terrorism is, its effect on a
nation and the best measures to curb it, this is using the Nigeria’s experience as a
model for the research
For the researchers and scholars, it will assist in their research as this work will
serve as a reference point for detailed research work and will deepen the scholar’s
knowledge on terrorism and its concomitant effect.
There is obviously no research that there is no limitation at on e point or the other
that almost makes the researcher want to give up on the study, except for some
persistence and improvisation.
The researcher faced problems like shortage of materials, because some libraries
the researcher visited would not borrow out their books, neither did they have
photocopying machines to make copies of these books. However the researcher
overcame the obstacle of limited materials by using few articles and journals online
that is useful to the research topic.
However, the researcher overcame these limitations through determination and
Blacklist: A list or register of entities or people who, for one reason or another, are
being denied a particular privilege, service, mobility, access or recognition.
Bombing: The use of any of the various detonable weapons to release destructive
materials such as smoke and gases that is harmful.
NSA: National Security Agency
Peace: Is a period of harmony between different social groups that is characterized
by lack of violence, conflict behaviors and the freedom from fear of violence.
Commonly understood as the absence of hostility and retribution.
War: A state of competition or hostility between different people or groups.
Terrorism: The unofficial or unauthorized use of violence and intimidation in the
pursuit of political aims.
The focus of this research is to delve into the evolution of terrorism in Nigeria with
major focus on the efforts of the Nigerian government to fight terrorism in Nigeria
from 2010 till date. Terrorism in Nigeria has had its tolls on the country, which has
affected various segments in the country and causing a halt to proper functioning of
the economic, social, educational and political activities in Nigeria. It has led to the
state of emergency in some states in Nigeria such as Borno, Yobe, and Adamawa
affecting international relations in such a way that it poses a threat between Nigeria
and other countries. It hampers economic and political growth, which further
causes a strain on international relation’s and foreign investment. This research will
show the inception of terrorism in Nigeria by first understanding what terrorism is
and this will be discussed by drawing from international definitions on which acts
and practices constitute terrorism.
This research will also discuss Nigeria’s effort to battle this pandemic, and analyze if
the procedures taken are effective. This work is of grave importance, and needs to
be extensively researched with the hope of propounding solutions to this problem,
given the fact that Nigeria has been blacklisted as a terrorist country internationally.


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