John Campbell

Africa in Transition

Campbell tracks political and security developments across sub-Saharan Africa.

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Showing posts for "Nigeria: Dancing on the Brink"

Nigeria’s Boko Haram and Heavy Weapons

by John Campbell
DATE IMPORTED:January 22, 2010A soldier mans a machine gun on top of an armoured vehicle outside the central mosque as Muslims pray in Nigeria's central city of Jos, January 22, 2010. (Akintunde Akinleye/Courtesy Reuters) DATE IMPORTED:January 22, 2010A soldier mans a machine gun on top of an armoured vehicle outside the central mosque as Muslims pray in Nigeria's central city of Jos, January 22, 2010. (Akintunde Akinleye/Courtesy Reuters)

Ten Books for Approaching Religious Conflict in Nigeria

by John Campbell
A newspaper front page reporting the death of Nigerian novelist Chinua Achebe lies on a street in Calabar, Cross River State, southeast Nigeria, March 23, 2013. (Afolabi Sotunde/Courtesy Reuters) A newspaper front page reporting the death of Nigerian novelist Chinua Achebe lies on a street in Calabar, Cross River State, southeast Nigeria, March 23, 2013. (Afolabi Sotunde/Courtesy Reuters)

The Tony Blair Faith Foundation has just published Emily Mellgard’s “Must Reads on Religious Conflict in Nigeria.” Read more »

Boko Haram Terror on Northern Nigeria’s Highways

by John Campbell
A woman crosses a deserted road in Bulumkutu, after the military declared a 24-hour curfew over large parts of Maiduguri in Borno State May 19, 2013. (Afolabi Sotunde/Courtesy Reuters) A woman crosses a deserted road in Bulumkutu, after the military declared a 24-hour curfew over large parts of Maiduguri in Borno State May 19, 2013. (Afolabi Sotunde/Courtesy Reuters)

Drew Hinshaw in the Wall Street Journal reports Boko Haram terror on the four hundred-mile long highway between Kano (northern Nigeria’s largest city) and Maiduguri (the Northeast’s largest city). He reports incidences of chain-saw beheadings of truck drivers at the hands of Boko Haram members, perhaps an indication of the high propaganda value of such brutal murders. Read more »

Amnesty International on Student and Teacher Killings in Northern Nigeria

by John Campbell
Residents survey vehicles damaged after a bomb blast at a primary school in Maiduguri, the capital of Nigeria's Borno state February 29, 2012. REUTERS/Stringer. (Afolabi Sotunde/Courtesy Reuters) Residents survey vehicles damaged after a bomb blast at a primary school in Maiduguri, the capital of Nigeria's Borno state February 29, 2012. REUTERS/Stringer. (Afolabi Sotunde/Courtesy Reuters)

The horror of student and teacher killings in Nigeria is amplified by Amnesty International’s almost clinical recounting and enumerating of their deaths at the hands of radical jihadists. Its report, “Keep Away from Schools or We’ll Kill You: Education Under Attack in Nigeria” is a grim must-read. Read more »

Boko Haram’s Shekau: He’s Back!

by Guest Blogger for John Campbell
A poster advertising for the search of Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau is pasted on a wall in Baga village on the outskirts of Maiduguri, in the north-eastern state of Borno May 13, 2013. (Tim Cocks/Courtesy Reuters) A poster advertising for the search of Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau is pasted on a wall in Baga village on the outskirts of Maiduguri, in the north-eastern state of Borno May 13, 2013. (Tim Cocks/Courtesy Reuters)

This is a guest post by Jacob Zenn, an analyst of African Affairs for the Washington D.C.-based think tank, The Jamestown Foundation, and a contributor to the West Point CTC Sentinel.

At least four times since 2009, Nigerian security officials have claimed they have killed brutal Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau, who says he “slaughters infidels like rams.” On August 19, the army spokesman and Nigerian analysts suggested Shekau died in Cameroon after gunshot wounds sustained in a battle in Borno State on June 19. Other officials claimed Cameroonian border guards killed Shekau. Read more »

Nigeria’s Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala Under Fire and the Ghost of Biafra

by John Campbell
Nigeria's Finance Minister Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala attends a session at the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, January 26, 2012. (Christian Hartmann/Courtesy Reuters) Nigeria's Finance Minister Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala attends a session at the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, January 26, 2012. (Christian Hartmann/Courtesy Reuters)

Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, the minister of finance in Goodluck Jonathan’s government, is widely respected by the international economic community. A veteran of the World Bank, she served as finance minister in Olusegun Obasnajo’s second administration (2003-2007) and successfully negotiated Paris Club debt relief. Read more »

A Moral Approach to State Failure

by John Campbell

Father Stan Chu Ilo at St Michael’s College, University of Toronto, has written a perceptive review of Dancing on the Brink that appeared in Nigeriaworld last Friday. Following a detailed and accurate analysis of the book’s argument — with which he does not always agree — he suggests adding a moral and religious dimension to state failure, which he agrees is underway in Nigeria. His lens goes beyond my essentially political approach and contributes a deeper element to the conversation that is worth considering.