The Nigerian State: 'Violence has been deregulated'


Who remembers the prediction of Nigeria's breakup come 2015? An op-ed piece in the Daily Times of Nigeria does, and the writer, El-Nathan John is angry. He is originally from Kaduna State in Northern Nigeria and is angry about the quasi-religious violence going on in his hometown. I don't know that we should only get mad when our states and communities are affected, but his piece is germane to the on-going debate about the state of Nigeria.

Is Boko Haram abiding by the tenets of Islam when they bomb Churches? Are the Christians in Kaduna wrong to have struck back in the face of the constant bombings of Churches in Northern Nigeria? Are those who are killing really doing it for the Christians or Christianity or are they being manipulated by higher forces, probably political? Should religion even an issue at all, or is it rather a front for what really ails us as a country? What is the way forward for Nigeria?

What is certainly not a way forward is violence. Neither is trading blames and pointing fingers. We make noise on social media but what I wish for is a way to be able to reach those 150 million out of 160million Nigerians who do not have access to the internet, and sometimes not even radios and television. Still, somebody is talking to them and giving them false or incomplete information. Let us find a way to educate the masses and inform them of what some of us already know.

This is beyond religion. This is beyond tribe. This is simply about distribution of wealth among the elite. Unfortunately, a lot of us internet activists are among this elite, and until we begin to have grassroot movements, I have to question how honest our intentions are. Yes, including myself.

Read El-Nathan's I am Angry
You can read Temie's No Good Men