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Chaos In the Midst of a State of Emergency

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bokoharamThe latest attack of Boko Haram on the Composite Group Air Force Base and the Borno State International Airport in Maiduguri has questioned the effectiveness of emergency rule in the state. The Emergency Rule which started in May, 2013 in the three North-East States of Borno, Adamawa and Yobe was extended by the National Assembly following the request by the President in November, 2013. With a death toll of about 3,600 people attributed to the militant group since 2009, the Chief of Air Staff Marshal Alex Badeh, had admitted in a statement that the current state of emergency might continue longer than expected.

Once believed to be a mere local terrorist group seeking undue attention, the notice of the country has indeed been drawn to the sophisticated machinery and weaponry the insurgents  uses in inflicting  terror  on the lives and property of innocent people. The attack on the Air-Force base and Airport in Borno saw the destruction of 3military aircrafts and 2 helicopters and the burning of about 100 vehicles. About 2,000 members of the militant group were said to have driven in with anti-aircraft mounted Hilux vehicles to cause the mayhem.

The attack in Borno must be contrasted with the alleged reported strides the Joint Task Force claims to be making in the emergency States.  The United Nations has reported that there have been 48 separate “Boko Haram related” attacks in the region since the declaration of the emergency rule.  Also, the incessant arrest and continued detention of persons thought to be members of this militant group has highlighted the need for the verification and investigation procedure adopted by the Joint Task Force on alleged Boko Haram suspects.

With the United States of America currently designating Boko Haram as a Foreign Terrorist Group, the Joint Task Force has an arduous task ahead of it and must prove that the economic and security task it has been burdened with in fighting this menace far outweighs its benefit.