This article argues that bad governance and corruption particularly in the Northern part of Nigeria have been responsible for the persistent rise in the activities of Jama’atu Ahlis Sunna Lidda’awati wal-Jihad (JASLWJ), Arabic for “people committed to the propagation of the tradition and jihad.” It is also known as “Boko Haram,” commonly translated as “Western education is sin.” Based on qualitative data obtained through interviews with Nigerians, this article explicates how poor governance in the country has created a vicious cycle of corruption, poverty, and unemployment, leading to violence. Although JASLWJ avows a religious purpose in its activities, it takes full advantage of the social and economic deprivation to recruit new members. For any viable short- or long-term solution, this article concludes that the country must go all-out with its anti-corruption crusade. This will enable the revival of other critical sectors such as agriculture and manufacturing, likely ensuring more employment. Should the country fail to stamp out corruption, it will continue to witness an upsurge in the activities of JASLWJ, and perhaps even the emergence of other violent groups. The spillover effects may be felt not only across Nigeria but also within the entire West African region.
Suleiman, Mohammed Nuruddeen and Mohammed Aminul Karim. 2015. "Cycle of Bad Governance and Corruption: The Rise of Boko Haram in Nigeria." Sage (March): 1-11. http://sgo.sagepub.com/content/5/1/2158244015576053.full-text.pdf+html