Nigeria vs Boko Haram – What next?

Has the so called Giant of Africa fallen?  The nation is currently plagued by fundamentalist “Religious” terrorism and in a sad twisted irony, the current government have been embarrassed by the total lack of security and co-ordination in the country.

It is one thing to claim the highest GDP turnover in Africa and boast about it when being questioned on the nation’s poverty levels *Cough Cough* Jonathan but showcasing inadequacy and the inability to protect the citizens from what was at first a small growing terrorist group is indeed embarrassing.

The terrorist group known as Boko Haram  seems to be growing stronger; it amazes one how this group can successfully hide over 200 school girls without being caught – This shows that they do have some sort of financial sponsorship going on and they are being funded regularly (Someone please monitor financial transfers in the country,unusually large transfers should be investigated;border control should be tightened, are the weapons being smuggled?).  The main priority of the president should be to find those girls rather than thinking of campaigning for another term in office. Recently Boko Haram just struck three villages in Nigeria; killing approximately 48 people in the process.  The group is disturbingly getting bolder,fingers are being pointed and dots are beginning to connect – A few years ago General Buhari was quoted as stating that he “would make Nigeria ungovernable”  if he did not win the election.

Could it be that he is now acting on his said threat?

On the other hand speculators have stated that this could be a prime example of what we call “State Sponsored Terrorism”? ….  In a simple definition state sponsored terrorism refers to  a government’s support of terrorist activities especially against other countries. The  former president of Pakistan Asif Zardari has gone on record to admit the his government created terrorist groups to attack India {Click here to see full story} – the question is what country would plan such attack on Nigeria? What is there to gain? Oil?.

A few weeks ago i stumbled upon this video on YouTube (Check it out) – it was a Ted talk presented by renowned African economist Dambisa Moyo. During her speech, she presented  data  from a research study  that shows a correlation between the duration of democracy in a country and its GDP per capita values (Income).  She stated that the GDP per capita value is “the greatest determinant of how long a democracy can last”. 

dambisa moyo's prediction. africapublic 2


As you can see, countries with a per capita of 1000 USD are predicted to last an average of 8.5 years under democracy. If a country reaches a per capita value of 6000 USD yearly then that country is going to experience perpetual democracy.

What was interesting to note is the part i circled in RED. Countries with a GDP per capita of 1000 – 2000 USD are shown to experience democracy for an average of 16 years. 

What does this mean? Well Nigeria did become a democratic nation way back in 1963 (Yes i know independence is stated as 1st October 1960 but the nation was not fully independent until the declaration of independence was signed in 1963), that democracy did not last very long – by 1966 the nation would be embroiled in a nasty civil war.

But its most recent democratic rule (4th republic) commenced on May 29th 1999.  Nigeria’s current GDP is estimated by  the database of trading economics to be approximately 1050 USD.  Looking back at the data above, the countries in the 1k-2k Per capita range are predicted to experience 16 years of democracy – We are currently in the 15th year of Nigeria’s democracy. Are you seeing what i am seeing? …

At the end of the day, the most important task the government should be working on is the safe return of those innocent young ladies. Once that has been accomplished, the risk of slipping out of democracy yet again should be examined.  An angry colleague of mine said to me last night “Swap Goodluck Jonathan for the girls” –   I wouldn’t go that far .. yet.

But in all honesty, No third term please.. the Nigerian presidential elections is beginning to resemble a game of Musical chairs. Should the north secede? or should the country just break up into different regions? Because it looks like its becoming too big and too conflicting to succeed as an economy.

Don’t let the new GDP numbers fool you.. Africa’s largest economy is simply a title.. South Africa has a GDP per capita that is 4 times larger than Nigeria’s.

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