The Aga Khan University’s Institute for Educational Development will host a free public lecture titled
'Boko Haram: Governance, Religion, Security, and Education in Modern Nigeria' lead by Funso Afolayan as part of the university’s Research Seminar Series.
Funso Afolayan is the Associate Professor of History and African Studies at the University of New Hampshire. In addition to several book chapters and research publications in journals, he is co-author of Yoruba Sacred Kingship: A Power Like That of the Gods, (Washington and London: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1996) and author of Culture and Customs of South Africa (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2004). He recently served as the President of the Nigerian Studies Association (NSA) and is the founding editor of its journal, Journal of Nigeria Studies (JNS).
What is Boko Haram?
Boko Haram literally means “Western education is forbidden”.
Established in 2002, and described by the Global Terrorism Index in 1915, as the world’s deadliest terror group, Boko Haram began its violent insurgency in 2009 with the dual objectives of establishing an Islamic state in Northern Nigeria and ridding the region of all elements of western education, which it considers to be the most potent obstacle to its goal of total islamization of the country.
To achieve its aims, Boko Haram began a systematic campaign of destructive and murderous violence directed against secular, religious, and educational institutions and groups perceived as being inimical to its islamization agenda. True to its name, the group unleashed a reign of terror on educational institutions in the Nigerian northeast: burning and looting schools; recruiting and enlisting male students; intimidating, abducting, raping, and marrying off schoolgirls; indiscriminately killing students, staff, and teachers; and creating an acute sense of insecurity that made schooling, governance or normal daily living impossible.
This presentation examines the roots of the Boko Haram phenomenon, its war on Western education, how and why it has managed to defy and survive every effort to suppress it, and what have been the major ramifications of the movement for the pursuance of education, livelihood, governance, security, and stability in Nigeria.