– Nkaiso Akpan & Ibegi Maxwell Alakurogha report
As Boko Haram, the terrorist group that recently pledged its allegiance to the Islamic State, continues to threaten the possibility of safe elections in North-Eastern Nigeria, Radar reporters have crowdsourced opinions across the Niger Delta to better understand how local people view the militant threat.
“It will be a bigger problem if the government doesn’t find the root cause”
This week, Radar reporter – Nkaiso Akpan spoke with two Rivers State residents who emphasised that this crisis was approaching their doorstep and must be watched and contained. Ms Akpan asked the question, “though originating far from the Niger Delta, is Boko Haram now a national issue?
Mr Francis, a 35 year old resident, responded, “Boko Haram is a threat to democracy and the country’s stability…, but, so far, enough is being done. However, for the people of Niger Delta the important thing is to keep a vigilant eagle eye on their activities to make sure the group doesn’t spread its operations to our region.”
Mr Steve Oguche, 37, underlined that the group’s activities are now a direct concern to the Niger Delta. He said, “It is now a national problem, but it shouldn’t be personalised by the people of Niger Delta because others might misunderstand them. If proper measures are not put in place the group might spread to other parts of the country as well. Enough hasn’t been done to stop Boko Haram…it will be a bigger problem if the government doesn’t find the root cause and their sponsors,” he concluded.
Apathy towards terrorist threat in South South Region?
Ibegi Maxwell Alakurogha, a Radar reporter from Souther Ijaw, Bayelsa State, interviewed Martin T. Marlin, a local resident who wished to share his thoughts on the continued apathy towards terrorism exhibited by those living in the South South region of Nigeria.
“The population of Nigeria is not deeply security conscious as to feel anything about it. Except those who are victims or whose family members who are victims. Many Nigerian’s do not listen to television or radio, they hear it from others.”
Additionally “failure of power supply also will make those who have electronics not get informed. They get it from others, therefore the majority of Nigerians do not feel anything about it. Some see it as a mirage.” Secondly, and importantly, “the operation is regional “North East and has not spread to the whole country. Niger Delta people do not feel about it.”