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By All Africa Students Union (AASU)
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Since its independence in 1960, Nigeria- Africa most populous country- has been marred in ethnic conflicts and practically under military dictatorship till 29th May 1999 when the new constitution, written by the military government, took effect; the same day Nigeria completed its transition from military to civilian rule with the inauguration of President Olusegun Obasanjo. So the past fifteen years constitute a gleam of hope for the country that has been enjoying, averaged out over the years, democratic rule with the holding of presidential and parliamentary elections every four years.

However Boko Haram, a group founded in 2002 and mainly based in the northeast of Nigeria aiming at establishing an Islamic state and putting an end to what it deems “westernization”, has come to create chaos and slow down the forward march of Nigeria for that matter disturb world peace. Boko Haram- a congregation of disgruntled, ignorant and heartless people without any vision apart from causing terror- has been kidnapping, harassing, maiming, displacing and killing innocent people under the eyes of a seemingly helpless Nigerian government and an apparent unconcern International Community. The kidnappings have taken a toll that extends beyond the victims and their families. The threat of abduction has effectively brought education to a stop in especially troubled areas, according to humanitarian groups. Between February and May, more than 15,000 students in the northern region of Nigeria stopped attending school out of fear of attacks.

It was until this terrorist group abducted more than 200 girls in a raid on the Chibok Girls' secondary school in Nigeria's northeastern Borno State that the International Community came out of its lackadaisical attitude to try to thwart its menace for world peace.

It is heartwarming and salutary to note the awakening of the International Community to treat this matter with all the seriousness it deserved. Henceforth no stone should be left unturned until Boko Haram and its likes are completely crushed. However it is important to recognize that the fundamental reasons for the emergence of insurgent groups like Boko Haram are rooted in our current socio-economic and political situation characterized by high youth unemployment, cronyism, marginalization, dishonesty for personal gains, bad governance etc.

Therefore the long term solutions to this menace will be the establishment of more just society devoid of corruption, bad governance, cronyism etc. where the resources will be used for the betterment of the living conditions of the general citizenry instead of the few greedy leaders insensitive to the sufferings of their people.

AASU commends the initiatives of the Chairman of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), His Excellency John Dramani Mahama, to visit Nigeria to acquaint himself with first hand information and call for a sub-regional meeting in order to organize a collective response to this dangerous situation and nip in the bud any slight desire to create such group anywhere in the region.

AASU urges the International Community to support relentlessly the struggle against Boko Haram and its likes until they are completely defeated, ensure a more just international economic relations and fight corruption, cronyism and bad governance.

AASU condemns unreservedly the abduction of the girls by Boko Haram and demands their immediate release.

Down with terrorism!
(Secretary General)
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