Nigeria: Death of Boko Haram’s Leader Spells Worry for Nigeria and Its Neighbors

Abubakar Shekau, chief of the Boko Haram terrorist community, is alleged to contain committed suicide in fight. Removed from solving a grief for the Nigerian authorities, his loss of life is likely to extra destabilize the region.

Loads of times up to now, Boko Haram chief Abubakar Shekau was as soon as declared lifeless, easiest to reappear in movies taunting the authorities of Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari. However, Nigerian security educated Kabir Adamu is moderately certain that this time Shekau was as soon as killed. “Every kind of offer that can verify the working out has verified that it is miles correct,” he suggested DW.

Boko Haram’s rival, the Islamic Issue West Africa Province (ISWAP), claimed that Shekau detonated a suicide vest right through a gunfight in Sambisa woodland on Would possibly perchance well perchance per chance 18, to lead far from being taken prisoner and made to quit the management of his community.

The Nigerian defense power is showing some reticence, pointing to ongoing investigations to contain a look at what took location. But their idea to receive DNA to level to a loss of life that came about three weeks ago is rarely any longer real looking. “He’s alleged to contain blown himself up, so any stays can be hard to bag,” Adamu talked about.

Shekau’s faction has no longer confirmed his loss of life both. But this is primarily attributable to its contemporary deliver of disarray, which precedes Shekau’s purported loss of life. “Within the previous few months, its commanders contain been arrested. Most contain both authorized the management of ISWAP, or they’ve been killed,” talked about Adamu, bringing up that in the final couple of years, the volume of followers in Shekau’s camp has been dwindling at an actual fee, while ISWAP has had no effort discovering recruits.

A brutal and ruthless chief

Shekau, an ethnic Kanuri born in Yobe deliver, took over the reins of Boko Haram, formally acknowledged because the Jama’tu Ahlis Sunna Lidda’awati wal-Jihad (JAS), after its founder Mohammed Yusuf died in police custody in 2009. Shekau was as soon as the longest-serving chief of any Islamic jihadist community on this planet. “I judge he dominated by terror. He was as soon as a ruthless chief who killed his commanders and followers in the occasion that they disagreed with his agenda,” Adamu talked about.

The rebel chief’s brutality extended to the civilian inhabitants. This strategy resulted in a break up right through the favorite community, with ISWAP slowly emerging because the extra powerful militia. ISWAP concentrates on attacking the central authorities’s security forces and institutions and has loudly condemned Shekau’s reign of indiscriminate fear.

The jihadist became acknowledged to a valuable wider public in 2014, following the kidnapping of 276 schoolgirls in town of Chibok. In his movies, he talked about publicly that he “enjoyed killing.”

Battle of interests

Nigerian security analyst Yahuza Getso is rarely any longer delighted that a incompatibility in strategy is enough to account for the violence between the 2 jihadist organizations. “The request is, why is ISWAP struggling with Boko Haram? If the 2 Islamic militias are struggling with every diversified, one thing is indubitably corrupt someplace,” Getso suggested DW. He suspects a sturdy involvement of outside interests, tied into the native contention between Anglophone Nigeria and its Francophone neighbors, to boot to the interests of “superpowers in the Lake Chad Basin.”

Kabir Adamu has no doubts that the insurgents receive aid from the out of doors, at the side of diversified jihadist groups. But he says it is miles “nearly very no longer likely” to verify the many conspiracy theories circulating. “Despite the true fact that deliver actors are supporting them, they is rarely any longer going to break it straight. They tend to break it through non-deliver actors which could perchance per chance be working in the region,” he talked about.

Both analysts moreover agree that while Buhari’s authorities could perchance per chance feel a sense of reduction to be rid of their most infamous terrorist, Shekau’s loss of life could perchance per chance no longer sleep inflicting extra concerns for the region. “Fully. More troubles for the Nigerian authorities. More effort for the Cameroon authorities. More struggle and a imaginable regrouping of the insurgents in Chad,” Getso talked about.

ISWAP’s consolidation

A bolstered ISWAP can be better ready to coordinate operations right through borders to reach its talked about purpose of setting up a caliphate. “It is extremely likely that we will seem a consolidation of ISWAP in the Sahel and the Lake Chad Basin,” inserting them in a location to bag extra funds from the umbrella terrorist community Islamic Issue (IS) and entice extra recruits, Adamu talked about.

ISWAP’s recognition is rising no longer easiest since it avoids concentrated on civilians. The jihadists strive to provide the inhabitants public services in areas where the deliver is largely absent. “The grievances centered round inequality, poverty, segregation, round a political structure that does no longer enable the inhabitants to prefer part in authorities, are precise. They’ll jog on being exploited by ISWAP for recruitment and concentrated on,” Adamu outlined.

Combating the root causes of terrorism

Within the final dozen years, President Buhari has given precedence to a massive and forceful armed response to the terrorist menace, a manner that has had easiest scant success. At this time, “no territory is jog by the jihadist groups,” Adamu admitted, noting that there was as soon as moreover a major low cost in the volume of command engagements with the central authorities’s security forces.

“But we contain no longer viewed the roughly success like stopping the weapon toddle, stopping the funding-generation functionality, moving the management, or killing them,” the analyst talked about. And Shekau’s loss of life while struggling with his jihadist opponents is rarely any longer going to aid enhance Nigerians’ confidence in an navy perceived as dilapidated, abusive, and unhealthy.

Abuja does contain a counter-terrorism strategy that targets to address the root causes of the struggle. Analyst Adamu believes that this roughly manner desires to be severely expanded. “Finest then will we leer some success by the Nigerian authorities,” he talked about.

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