Role Of Boko Haram In Nigeria

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Recently, Boko Haram in Northern
Nigeria has become the major source of crisis and fear in the country.
The violent activities of this group include attacks on churches and the death of a number of Christians.
Since Boko Haram is considered an Islamic fundamentalist group, its activities against Christians can ignite violent conflicts between
Christians and Muslims. This article explains the role of civil society in preventing the escalation of the crisis into a religious conflict between Christians and Muslims. It examines the role of the Christian
Association of Nigeria (CAN) and other religious institutions in the prevention of the escalation of the crisis. The major source of primary data is key informant interviews.
Secondary data were
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Boko Haram
Boko Haram officially calls itself Jama’atul Alhul Sunnah Lidda’wati wal
Jihad, which means people committed to the propagation of the Prophet’s teachings and Jihad.15 The expression “Boko Haram” is derived from one
Hausa word Boko which means book and an Arabic word Haram which means sin or forbidden. Generally, the expression portrays western education or anything associated with western civilization as sinful and forbidden.16 It is important to note that one could argue that this is an extreme interpretation and that the real grievance of members of the Boko Haram group is the corruption associated with people who benefit the most from “Western” education. In the same vein, Abdulkarim Mohammed, a researcher on Boko
Haram, added that violent uprisings in Nigeria are ultimately due to “the fallout of frustration with corruption and the attendant social malaise of poverty and unemployment.’’17 Some other scholars are of the view that the intent of Boko Haram adherents is to replace modern state formation with the traditional
Islamic state, because Western values run contrary to Islamic values.18
They believe that evil in the society is
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retaliate, but a call to the government to prevent the reoccurrence of such attacks. This kind of response can to some extent prevent Christians from reacting violently, and turning the situation into a conflict between Muslims and Christians. If CAN has persistently engaged in provocative statements that could incite Christians to fight against Muslims the situation could have been very different. Sometimes when notable leaders of CAN make aggressive statements, some other members attempt to reduce tension by opposing such confrontational statements and encouraging Christians to pray for peace.
The youth section of CAN also played useful roles in reducing the escalation of the crisis. For example, the Kaduna chapter of the youth section of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), offered a part of their premises to their Muslim counterpart for prayers. They also provided water to their Muslim brothers to conduct their
Magrib (night) prayers inside the premises of CAN. Such inter-religious activities have helped to foster peace between
Muslims and Christians despite the activities of the Boko Haram group.38
The second reason why the
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