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Published 12th September 2014

Vol 55 No 18


Nigeria

How terror twists the vote

MAIDUGURI: JTC Youth Vigilante Group member during a patrol through the deserted outskirts of Maiduguri. The civilian civil defence group are armed with old hunting rifles and homemade weapons to try and defend themselves against attacks by Boko Haram. Credit: Sven Torfinn / Panos
MAIDUGURI: JTC Youth Vigilante Group member during a patrol through the deserted outskirts of Maiduguri. The civilian civil defence group are armed with old hunting rifles and homemade weapons to try and defend themselves against attacks by Boko Haram. Credit: Sven Torfinn / Panos

Image courtesy of Panos Pictures

Accusations that a former state governor and army chief have been sponsoring the Islamist insurgents have fired up the election campaign

Almost in concert with the political parties' calendar for choosing their presidential candidates, the Jama'atu Ahlus Sunnah Lidda'awati wal Jihad, widely known as Boko Haram, is stepping up its military campaign in the north-east and threatening to disrupt next February's elections. Politicians have vacillated between trying to ignore Boko Haram's Islamist insurgency and using it against their rivals. With Boko Haram fighters seizing several towns and villages in north-east Nigeria and credibly threatening to attack Maiduguri, the capital of Borno State, it is clear that the insurgency will be a critical electoral issue.

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BLUE LINES
THE INSIDE VIEW

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