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Politics Femi Falana Blames Obasanjo,Former Governors For Boko Haram



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Popluar Lagos lawayer, Femi Falan has blamed former President Olusegun Obasanjo and former Governors for the emergence of the boko haram terrorist group.

See excerpt from interview with THE SUN

Nigeria has been grappling with a lot of violence at the national level especially in the North. It has taken a new vigor in the last few months. Are you satisfied with the way the government is prosecuting the war against terror?

Nobody is satisfied with the way and manner the war on terror is being prosecuted. In the first place, the culture of impunity that I alluded to earlier, is also likely to blame for the wave of violence being witnessed across the country – armed robbery, kidnapping, terrorism and other violent crimes. Under the Olusegun Obasanjo administration, the then governor of Zamfara State, Alhaji Ahmed Yerima proclaimed Sharia as state religion, contrary to section 10 of the constitution. Some of us demanded that he be stopped by the Federal Government by approaching the Supreme Court. That was ignored. Other governors, for purposes of election equally proclaimed Sharia in most parts of the North. Obasanjo later admitted, it was political Sharia, not religious one. But it has caused many political crises for the country – religio-political crises for the country, innocent people, ignorant people, young men and women, who thought that those governors genuinely wanted Sharia states, were hoodwinked. They even set up extra legal, extra judicial outfits to enforce Sharia. It was in the process that the Boko Haram phenomenon came up. If you go deeper, the actual name of the Boko Haram sect was a group that was out for the purification of Islam, which has been corrupted by these governors. In Borno State, ex-governor Ali Modu Sheriff recruited these guys to help him win the 2003 governorship election. He won, and appointed one of them, as commissioner for religious affairs to prosecute Sharia. Of course, the guy was asked to resign by the Boko Haram sect from the government. This is the genesis of the Boko Haram crisis. President Goodluck Jonathan set up a panel of inquiry in 2011. The panel came out with profound recommendations, including the identification and trial of the sponsors and founders of the Boko Haram sect. The report was issued in August 2012. Since then, the recommendations have not been implemented. We now have a dangerous situation in our hands whereby the state is tailing the Boko Haram sect, which obviously is more armed with more sophisticated weapons and modern gadgets of warfare. The Nigerian state is simply sending soldiers to commit suicide. The boys who are protesting, are now on trial. Some have been convicted of mutiny.

In other words, you’re saying the state is culpable for the insurgency and Obasanjo in particular is liable for his inaction when Sharia came up?

Yes. Honestly, that was the same case with the crisis in the Niger Delta. Governors who were close to the presidency set up the boys, the militants in the Niger Delta before the state lost control. So, ultimately, you have to point fingers at the Nigerian neo-colonial state that engages thieves, promoting violence as a diversionary measure. But more importantly, apart from the immediate cause, you must look at the remote cause of violence which is a kind of socio-political economy. I mean the neo-colonial political economy that we operate.

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#Sharia #Bokoharam #Falana #Obasanjo

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