Monday 26 November 2018


The attack by insurgents on the 157 Task Force Battalion of the Nigerian Army in Metele village, Borno state, killing over 100 soldiers with many still missing warranted this Blog Post. This is in-spite of the fact that the Presidency has repeatedly said that 'Boko Haram (BH) has been technically defeated'! The attack took place on Monday, 19th November, 2018. As an opener, I state categorically that I salute the courage and resilience of the soldiers and other security personnel who work day and night to keep we, the citizens safe. I also condole with the families of the fallen heroes.

There are conflicting figures from the Nigerian Army which says only 23 casualties were recorded with 31 wounded. Whatever the correct figures, the takeaway is that many Nigerian soldiers have lost their lives while fighting insurgency! This appears to be one loss too many in recent times. I wish to remind us that there a number of planks on which any counter-terrorism strategy is based viz.,

*Military engagement
*Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) Soft Approach (New narratives/Disarmament/Demobilisation/Re-integration etc)

There has been a lot of emphasis on the military engagement of insurgents in recent times to the detriment of Soft Approach to CVE, which entails the following:

*Presentation of counter narratives: Battle for the minds of the insurgents and indeed the local populace affected by insurgency to abandon the extant narrative and embrace a less radical one.
*Provision of more 'safe corridors' for repentant insurgents to undergo effective rehabilitation. A note of caution is necessary here. To avoid a situation where 'repentant' former BH members released into the society come back to re-group, a period of time should be allowed between 'graduating' from the safe corridor and actually re-integrating them into the society, to ensure that the community accepts them and that they are truly purged of indoctrination.
*Re-integration of the rehabilitated insurgents while ensuring less resistance to them by the locals.

Besides, the diplomatic flank seems to be failing, with Niger and Chad  pulling out of the Multi-National Joint Task Force (MNJTF)! To be sure, many of the recent attacks have taken place at border towns and villages. It appears the breakdown of the alliance between Nigeria and her neighbours - Niger and Chad is taking its toll! It is heartwarming that the four-nation pact for security among West African states, including Nigeria was signed last week. This new pact should not be allowed to break down like its predecessor.

What then are my suggestions?

1) The military engagement of the insurgents should continue, but intelligence gathering should be given a pride of place. The accusation of the rank and file that they are given obsolete equipment to fight insurgents who are better equipped needs to be interrogated, thoroughly investigated and redressed.

2) The welfare of the soldiers and other security personnel engaged in the complicated, difficult and protracted asymmetric war with the insurgents should be taken more seriously.

3) Disarmament, Demobilisation, Rehabilitation & Re-integration (DDRR) of repentant insurgents should be given priority while using clerics to appeal to the psyche of the locals to aid the re-integration of ex-militants.

4) The diplomatic angle is of utmost importance. As a matter of urgency, there should be shuttle diplomacy between Nigeria and Chad/Niger/Other neighbouring countries in order to re-kindle the initial enthusiasm that made for the success of the MNJTF ab initio. Nigeria cannot fight insurgency alone, she needs the collaboration of her neighbours.

5) The Lake Chad Basin Governors' Forum (LCBGF) could be approached for help. Nigeria is a member of the Forum. The inaugural conference of the LCBGF was held in Maiduguri, Borno state, May 2018. I was there live as a facilitator. See my Blog Post on the conference - Lake Chad Basin Governors' Forum  #LCBGF

6) Policy makers should be aware of the fact that there are fifth columnists and conflict merchants within and beyond our shores who profit by the war on terror and would like it to continue. Nigeria should do the needful to identify these negative elements.

On the whole, all hands must be on deck to make Nigeria safe and secure - military, CVE, diplomatic measures, etc. Remember: This is the only country we can call ours...

Related Links

*Metele attack: Over 100 soldiers died, many are missing
*BH releases disturbing video of bloody battle with Nigerian Army
*Soldiers cry out for help, call for probe after Metele attack
*Nigeria's Metele attack: President Buhari speaks of deep shock
*Nigerian Army threatens legal action over videos of BH attacks
*Ezekwesili calls for re-assessment of Nigeria's Anti-Terrorism Strategy
*Legal framework for the prevention of terrorism in Nigeria
*Strengthening capacity to counter terrorism in Nigeria
*Preventing violent extremism: The role of communication
*Insurgency in north-east Nigeria & its implications for inter-state & trans-border mobility, 2009-2016
*The ECOWAS Counter-Terrorism Strategy
*Counter-Terrorism & implications of in-fighting within BH
*Nigerian Military set to release 155 ex-BH fighters into society
*Withdrawal of troops by Niger threatens Multinational Joint Task Force (MJTF)
*Rethinking the functionality of the MNJTF   https://www,
*MNJTF counts successes in Lake Chad region
*Metele attack: NAF bombs terrorists' location
*Metele attack: Surviving soldiers send SOS to Buhari
*Metele attack: Casualty rises after BH opened fire on rescue team
*Is Islamic State in West Africa (ISWA) becoming more hard-line? west-africa-becoming-more-hardline...
*Army releases 154 former BH members into society
*Metele BH attack: Only 23 soldiers killed, 31 wounded - Nigerian Army
*Nigerian Army confirms BH's use of drones and foreign fighters
*Lake Chad Basin Governors' Forum  #LCBGF
*FBI's counter-terrorism investigations now on Amazon
*Despite its divisions, BH is no weaker
*Myetti Allah endorses Buhari for 2019 elections
*Political action by the UN required to save peacekeepers' lives
*How Rwanda is teaching Peace Education through Ubumuntu Conversations
*Foreign troops in the Sahel
*Paul D. Williams on the African Peace & Security Architecture
*It takes a Village: An action agenda on the role of CSOs in the rehabilitation & reintegration of those associated with & affected by VE
*Civilian led governance & security beyond BH 
*Counter-terrorism guide: Methods & tactics of global terrorism
*The civilian fall-out from the Sahel's spreading militancy
*The ligaments of counter-terrorism regime: Sexual violence & the vicarious traumatisation of female non-governmental workers: Evidence from Nigeria by Emeka T. Njoku
*Violence against civilians is on the rise in Africa
*Total fatalities are down, but the surge in certain types of violence should concern African governments
*Negotiating with Africa's terrorists
* Responses to BH in the Lake Chad Region: Policies, Cooperation & Livelihoods   issafrica,org/research/books-and-other-publications/responses-to-boko-haram-in-the-lake-chad-region-policies.../
*Assessing the NJTF against BH
*Surviving BH: Why children under five matter
*Economics of terrorism in the Lake Chad Basin
*Conflict is still Africa's challenge in 2020
*Proceed with caution: Africa's growing foreign Military presence
*ICC identifies potential war crimes by Nigeria's Security Forces, BH
*'FG is setting our killers free' - Soldiers kick as 1,400 BH suspects are released
*Katsina massacre: Bandits snatched babies from mothers and threw them into burning fire - Village Head
*Policy Brief: Addressing armed banditry in the north-west region of Nigeria: Exploring the potentials of a multi-dimensional conflict management approach
*At least 70 Nigerian soldiers killed in BH attack near Goneri village in north Yobe state on 23rd March 2020
*BH kills 92 Chadian soldiers in seven-hour attack same day as 70 Nigerian soldiers killed in Yobe state
*The future of peace-keeping in the transition to a more peaceful world
*ISWAP fighters ambush Borno Gorvernor's convoy on September 25,2020, kill 15 security personnel
*#Sahel: High risk conflicts diffusing & affecting neighbours - Violence has coninued to spread geographically in 2020
*When two elephants fight: Insurgency, counter-insurgency & environmental suffering in North-East Nigeria
*Life after Al-Shabab: Driving a school bus instead of an armed pickup truck
*'How to resolve the wicked conflicts in our increasingly turbulent times'    by Ralph Kilmann
*Untangling SSR
*At least 110 dead in Nigeria after suspected BH attack 
*The Zabarmari massacre of farmers: Should more citizens die in these killings?
*Court Martial convicts General who complained about inadequate equipment to fight BH
*'It's totally unacceptable for government to earmark N160b for de-radicalisation of terrorists when we have  2.3 million IDPs dying of hunger - Sen. Ndume 
'Court orders Nduma remanded in prison for failing to produce Maina' - 23/11/2020
'Fugitive Maina extradited from Niger Republic' - 3/12/2020
*BH attacks Nigerian Governor's convoy, kills 9
*BH releases video 'showing Chibok girls'
*BH explained (PDF)
*Insurgency: Nigerian Military intercepts ransom payment meant for BH sect
*Overcoming BH: Faith, society & Islamic radicalisationin Northern Nigeria
*Many killed as soldiers repel BH ambush
*What we need to understand about the conflict in Northern Nigeria
*Has the Anglophone crisis diverted Cameroon's resources from fighting BH?
*BH Now
*Human rights charity blasts failings as BH rampages in Nigeria
*Reporting on BH: Front-line journalists recount traumatic experiences: Media Foundation for West Africa
*Tackling BH/ISWAP terrorists: MNJTF receives additional equipment support from EU
*A cure worse than the disease
*Cameroonian troops kill 3 BH extremists
*Human rights education as the solution to religious persecution
*Nigeria is the 3rd most terrorised country in the world - Report
*Northwestern Nigeria falling into firm grip of terrorists into firm-grip-of-terrorists/
*Account for N50trn derivation funds, militants tell Niger Delta Governors
*Military debunks claim about killing of 78 farmers in Borno
*A Bibliography on BH
*Outlasting the caliphate: The evolution of the Islamic State threat in Africa
*Ex-BH fighters deradicalised, but still un-reconciled
*Data crisis & humanitarian intervention in North-East Nigeria   https;//
*The kidnapping Deja vu
*How we actually rescued Kankara school boys - Military
*Police warn isolation during Covid-19 could push young people to extremism
*Kankara: A call for national security laws
*Ondo's worsening insecurity as litmus test for South-West Amotekun
*Can the AU help Mozambique conquer terrorism?
*Trends in terrorism: What's in the horizon for 2021?
*BH blocks Lake Chad routes
*2020 trends in terrorism: From ISIS fragmentation to lone-actor attacks
*Key trends to watch in 2021 on non-state & armed actors
*BH terroristsaffiliated with ISWA have taken over a Military base in Borno
*A holistic & comprehensive road map for interrupting & preventing terrorist recruitment
*Extremism: When should we worry?
*Attack on Capitol was the beginning of American insurgency - Counter-terrorism Experts
*Migamba Case (DRC): When mining & exploitation leads to mass crimes 
*Nextier SPD EU-funded Policy Brief: Entrenching peace: Assessing community resilience & peace-building initiatives in north-east Nigeria
*127 soldiers resign from the Nigerian Army 
*From SALWs to WMD arms control: Linkages & shared benefits
*NATO Joint Warfare Centre declares initial operational capability for wargame design
*Nigeria: Another day of abduction
*Surviving insurgency
*Climate change is fueling recruitment into armed groups
*Countering VE by re-focusing on communities
*Armed conflict location event data for 2020
*We lost nearly 70 Professors to insurgency - University of Maiduguri Don
*Nigeria: 4 incidents of student kidnap in less than 60 days    thecable.index




Saturday 24 November 2018


'This is a Summit that overthrows that sense that we are stuck in a place of permanence of bad behaviour, failure, mediocrity, incompetence and the lack of capacity to work for the common good. A new Nigeria is possible' - Dr. Oby Ezekwesili

The Summit Of The Alternatives (SOTA), was held in Abuja, November 2018. It was chaired by Dr. Oby Ezekwesili, former Minister of Education, Co-Convener Bring Back Our Girls (BBOG) Movement & Convener Red Card Movement (RCM) NG. The Summit called for an alternative to Nigeria's current political class. I was there live! SOTA was co-sponsored by Centre for Democracy & Development (CDD), Nigeria First, Enough Is Enough, BudgIT, YIAGA Africa and the Red Card Movement (RCM).

Some of the speakers are:

*Prof. Patrick Lumumba - Advocate of the Supreme Court of Kenya/Keynote Speaker
*Prof. Bayo Olukoshi - Regional Director, Institute for Democracy & Electoral Assistance/Special Guest Speaker
*Emeka Okoye - Software Engineer
*Don Pedro Okogie - Artiste & Music Producer
*Segun Onigbinde - Co-founder/CEO BudgIT
*Fela Durotoye - Presidential Candidate
*Dr. Kingsley Moghalu - Presidential Candidate
*Omoyele Sowore - Presidential Candidate
*Dr. Sarah Jibril - Former Presidential Candidate

                      Photo above: Dr. Dayo Oluyemi-Kusa @the venue of the Summit

In her opening remarks, Dr. Oby Ezekwesili said 'This is a Summit that challenges the apparent norm that for us as a society, good has become evil while evil has become good. This Summit challenges the conventional wisdom that leadership is not for service but for self '. Oby continued 'It is a Summit that says no longer shall we allow ourselves to be led by the worst among us while the rest of us seat on the margins, murmuring and complaining'.

In his keynote address, Prof. Patrick Lumumba reiterated that 'The only thing that continues to hold Nigeria down are the political elite who have to liberate themselves from the politics of ethnicity and recognise that political leadership is a position of trusteeship. They ought to recognise that when they lead Nigeria, they are also leading Africa. Nigeria's leadership is the missing link in Africa's greatness. Nigeria should fix her healthcare, education, housing, etc. systems...'

Prof. Adebayo Olukoshi was enthralled by Aisha Yesufu's rendition of her spontaneous spoken word/poem tagged 'Once Upon A Time'. She envisages a new Nigeria where if she tells her grand-children that once upon a time in Nigeria, terrorists killed/kidnapped schoolgirls with careless abandon, stolen money by politically exposed persons was laundered across our borders, there was vote rigging/buying/selling, no good roads/hospitals/schools/markets, graduates had no jobs, etc her grand-kids would simply say: 'Grandma, you are lying'. This is because a new and better Nigeria would have been birthed in line with the vision of SOTA and her grand-kids would have no idea what she's talking about!

Olukoshi continued thus: 'No one in the world owes us a living, we have to wake up ourselves. When the citizens are deprived of basic necessities like security, food, shelter, decent jobs, electricity, adequate infrastructure, etc. then they are robbed of their dignity. Such dignity must be restored through effective and efficient leadership!

Each discussant during the panel discussion painted a picture of the Nigeria of their dream. We all look forward to a nation-state/country the average Nigerian would be proud of. SOTA is in the process of planning 'Next Steps' as a follow up to the first Summit, where various themes touched on would be analysed in greater detail with concrete action as back up...         

Friday 23 November 2018


'My political ambition is not worth the blood of any Nigerian.' - GEJ

'African renaissance remains an unfinished business, but the work that remains should not stop us from focusing on new priorities and challenges.' - GEJ

I was there live at the book launch of Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan's (GEJ), President of Nigeria (2010-2015) on the 20th of November, 2018 in Abuja. The book titled 'My Transition Hours' catalogued the events that led to the phenomenal moment when GEJ conceded defeat to Muhammadu Buhari in 2015. GEJ said 'This book is not my biography, as this will come later. This book reveals how I used power as a shield in the service of our nation and God...'

In his remarks, GEJ was worried about vote buying and selling in Nigeria's elections. He said that in many of the countries where he had observed or monitored elections, vote buying/selling was alien to them. GEJ therefore advised INEC to do the needful and eliminate such negative practice in Nigeria's elections. The book launch was indeed a gathering of who is who in Nigeria and indeed, Africa!

Some of the guests are:

*General Muhammadu Buhari President, Represented by the SGF, Barr. Boss Mustapha
*General Yakubu Gowon - Former Head of State
*General Ibrahim Babangida - Former Head of State Represented by his daughter, Aisha Babangida
*General Abdulsalami Abubakar - Former Head of State
*Chief  Dr. Olusegun Obasanjo - Former Head of State/Former President & Chair of Occasion
*John Dramani Mahama - President of Ghana (2012-2017)
*Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan - President (2010-2015)
*Dame Patience Jonathan - Former First Lady
*Dr. Akinwunmi Adesina - President, Africa Development Bank
*Dr. Bukola Saraki - Senate President
*Rt. Hon. Yakubu Dogara - Speaker, House of Representatives
*Atiku Abubakar - Former Vice President
*Arc. Namadi Sambo - Former Vice President
*Justice Alfa Belgore - Former Chief Justice of Nigeria/Book Reviewer
*Lt. Gen. T.Y. Danjuma - Former Minister of Defense/Chairman, T.Y. Danjuma Foundation
*Hon. Seriake Dickson - Governor of Bayelsa State
*HRM Igwe Alfred Achebe - Obi of Onitsha/Royal Father of the Day
*Prof. Maxwell Gidado - Fmr. Dean, Faculty of Law, Nasarawa State
*Uche Secondus - Chairman PDP
*Adams Oshiomole - Chairman, APC

                       Photo above: Dr. Dayo Oluyemi-Kusa arriving @ the venue of the conference

There was exchange of banter between the elder statesmen, especially Chief Dr. Olusegun Obasanjo and his former boss, General Yakubu Gowon. Politicians used the opportunity for politicking. Every photo session was turned into a political statement for generations yet unborn. But what were some of the issues discussed in the book? I shall highlight only a few here:

Chapter 3: 'Politics & patriotism - The fuel subsidy dilemma'. GEJ argues that 'politics in Nigeria and some other African countries is conducted like a primitive war!'. His major reference is the battle over fuel subsidy in 2012. He argued that the protests were 'politically motivated.'

Chapter 4: 'The Chibok schoolgirls affair'. GEJ accuses the Governor of Borno state of seizing an 'opportunity to politicise an unfortunate incident while the APC indulged in 'psychological programming', making GEJ look like a villain. GEJ says President Barrack Obama of the USA worked against his re-election.

Chapter 5: 'Stealing & Corruption'. According to GEJ, most of the measures adopted by the APC, like the TSA, IPPIS and BVN are all PDP initiatives.

Chapter 6: 'Power struggle in Nigeria'. GEJ discusses the 'attack of the majorities on the minorities'.

Chapter 7: 'Presidential election campaign'. GEJ explains why he conceded defeat.

Chapter 10: 'The 2014 National Political Conference'. GEJ frowns at the fact that the Buhari regime put the report in the cooler.

Chapters 11-13: 'Public Service Reform'/African Renaissance'

For me, the high point of the occasion was the launch of the Goodluck Jonathan Foundation (GJF), which is an 'independent, knowledge-based organisation founded to serve as a platform for championing and catalysing positive social and economic progress across Africa.' GJF would propagate the legacies of its founder, GEJ, which include:

*Distinguished record of public service
*Dedication to peace & reconciliation
*The use of 'soft power'
*Adherence to the rule of law
*Inclusive governance
*Promotion of citizens' rights
*National integration
*Respect for the sanctity of human life
*Protection of minority rights
*Environmental justice
*Entrenchment of social equity
*Peaceful political transitions
*Expansion of economic prospects for the governed

The Vision of  GJF is Peaceful, just & inclusive nations of Africa. The Mission is to create and support programmes that underscore our common humanity and inspire new leadership and communities devoted to national harmony, inter-ethnic co-existence, protection of minority rights, environmental justice, gender equity, democratic governance and shared prosperity.

There are 3 main planks for programmes: Democratic Governance, Consolidating Peace & Stability, Promoting Prosperity.

Democratic Governance

*Free, fair & credible elections
*Accountability & social inclusion
*Efficient institutions & the rule of law
*Protection of minority rights
*Equitable access to economic assets
*Leadership & value re-orientation

Consolidating Peace & Stability

*Peace Building & Conflict Prevention
*Consensus building & conflict resolution
*Credible electoral processes & peaceful political transitions
*Citizen participation in political processes
*Human security & emerging threats
*Economic rights

Promoting Prosperity

*Championing youth & women empowerment programmes/projects
*Broadening access to literacy, skills building & training opportunities that enhance income earning capabilities
*Academic & cross-cultural exchanges
*Cross-national exchanges & new post-colonial alliances

The Mission, Vision & Programmes of GJF are indeed laudable and all men and women of goodwill are enjoined to join hands with GEJ to make GJF a Foundation of international standard. Happy 61st birthday, GEJ, and congrats on the launch of 'My Transition Hours' and GJF. You are indeed a statesman!

Relevant Links

*Obama & the 2015 elections
*My Transition Hours: Ebele Jonathan - 97817324922641
*'My Transition Hours': Jonathan invites Buhari, Obasanjo, Atiku to launch
*Governor Shettima describes ex-President Jonathan's My Transition Hours as 'an elementary book of fiction'.   https://1 push,ng/governor-shettima-describes-ex-president-jonathans-my-transition-hours-as-an-elementary-book-of-fiction
*'You lied about corruption', Presidency tells Jonathan
*'My Transition Hours': A review by Reuben Abati
*Jonathan cries out over piracy of book: My Transition Hours
*Mahama joins Goodluck Jonathan to launch book: My Transition Hours
*2019: PDP reacts as Presidency condemns Goodluck Jonathan's 'My Transition Hours'


Monday 19 November 2018


A two-day workshop was held between the 14th and 15th of November 2018 to dissect 'The gender dimensions of social conflict, armed violence peace-building (PB)' in Nigeria. There was comparison of best practices in Nigeria and Indonesia. Nigeria's collaborative lessons were drawn from three states: Delta, Enugu and Plateau states. There were panel discussion(s) on 'Gender, Conflict & Peace-Building'; 'Best Practices & Differences: Indonesia & Nigeria'; Research Results: Gendered Mechanisms of Conflict Management', etc.

The meeting was convened by Women's International League for Peace & Freedom (WILPF) Nigeria and Women's Right to Education Programme (WREP). The project partners are:

*Centre for Conflict, Development & Peace-Building (CCDP), Graduate Institute of International & Development Studies, Switzerland
*Geneva Peace-Building Platform, Switzerland
*WILPF. Switzerland
*UN Women

This research dissemination workshop is part of a larger project, the R4D Project on Gender, Conflict & Peace-Building supported by:

*Swiss National Science Foundation
*Swiss Agency for Development & Cooperation
*R4D Prgrammes

Some of the research findings are as follows:

*Women in conflict zones are not homogeneous. Not all women are 'peacemakers'. Some actually fuel conflict while others are 'conflict merchants'.
*The 'Reflective Peace Practice' (RPP) Model is more useful in the field in Nigeria than the Early Warning & Early Response (EWER) Model.
*Trauma healing as part of the peace process needs to be stepped up. Trauma could impact mental health in victims. Specialists (psychotherapists, psychologists, psychoanalysts, nurses, medical doctors, social workers, etc) need to be deployed to conflict zones during the peace-building process. Besides, trauma could make a woman who is a peace-builder become a conflict merchant!
*Cultural systems, including traditional methods of conflict transformation, should be re-visited for effective social cohesion. Local 'institutions' like the 'Umuada' in Eastern Nigeria that could aid peace-building need to be encouraged.
*Practitioners should keep an eye on the sustainability index of peace interventions.

            Photo L-R: Dr. Dayo Oluyemi-Kusa & Mrs. Yemisi George @ the workshop 

The Nigerian researchers are:

Enugu: Dr. Vincent Onodugo  & Elizabeth Jeiyol
Delta: Bridget Osakwe &Mariam Kadiri
Plateau State (Jos): Mabel Ade & Amina Ahmed

Dr. Wening Udasmoro and Arifah Rahmawati then presented 'Grand Narratives on PB from Indonesia'. There were so many similarities between the Nigeria and Indonesia. The role of 'senior men' in the PB process is acknowledged in both countries. Youths dominate the narration on violence, but they could also be peace-builders. 'Masculinities' emanate not only from men. Females could also display such masculinities. In both countries there are child soldiers, Mediation is the most common Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) method used to resolve conflicts and music is deployed for peace. There is conflict in East Java (Indonesia) over natural resources similar to the situation in the Niger Delta (Nigeria). It is possible to build the capacity of citizens while undergoing research in both countries.

Elisabeth Prugl (Professor of International Relations, Graduate Institute, Geneva & Director Gender Centre) presented an illuminating paper titled: 'The feminist constructivist approach to the study of violent conflicts'. She quoted Simon de Beauvoir who said: 'We are not born women, we become women'. Gender is a societal construct. Masculinity is a continuum. Even females could be on the masculinity scale. We seem to be fixated on 'toxic masculinity'. Masculinity is mobile, not static. We need new patterns of explanation, for example: I (Input) ~ M (Mechanism) ~ O (Output). That is, Inputs combined with adequate Mechanisms lead to positive Outcomes that could support peace processes.

Christelle Rigual (Post-doctoral Researcher, Graduate Institute, Geneva & Coordinator, Gender Centre) extended Prof. Prugl's postulation further in her presentation: 'The intersectionally gendered mechanisms in conflict dynamics'. She said gender operates as a productive force in conflict dynamics. Gender informs, shapes and constrains outcomes. According to Christelle, the mechanisms employed are:

*Symbolism - Men represented as strong protectors, while women are seen as weak.
*Masculine authority - 'Intersectional component of age and strength'
*Institutions - These are also social constructs.
*Performance of gender - e.g. Skill sets of men

Then came the group discussion. There were six groups:

1) Art/Literature/Sport/Music
2) Vigilantes/Neighbourhood Watch
3) Traditional Institutions
4) Religion & Spirituality
5) Media
6) Trauma healing

The main take-aways were that:

*Art, literature, sport and music are veritable avenues for engendering peace if strategically deployed.
*Neighbourhood Watch could have a more positive influence as regards peace than Vigilantes. The latter group is often corrupted by politically exposed persons who sometimes nudge them to do their bidding.
*Traditional institutions (Emirs, Obas, Obis, Chiefs, etc) are germane to peace processes.
*Religious leaders wield influence especially for terrorism and similar ideological warfare. They need to strike positive cords towards peace in their sermons.
*I presented the position for this group, where I said media practitioners need intensive training in conflict reporting so that they contribute to peace rather than conflict. The ownership of particular media houses could colour their presentation of 'facts' in this 'post truth' era. This could engender bad blood in the stakeholders in the conflict who feel 'shortchanged' by the report.
*Trauma healing needs to be given more attention.

On the whole, it was indeed an honour to meet the duo of Prof. Elisabeth Prugl and Dr. Christelle Rigual live in Abuja. Their presentation of their on-going research was well received and it was agreed at the meeting that their perspectives on 'Intersectionally gendered mechanisms in conflict dynamics' be factored into future similar research in Nigeria and Indonesia. Kudos to the duo of Dr. (Iyom) Joy Onyesoh (First black President of WILPF) and Mimidoo Achakpa (Executive Director,  WREP) for excellent coordination of the meeting. Though Joy was not physically present, due to unforeseen circumstances, her managerial skills during the planning made the workshop a huge success. Bravo!

Related Links

*On toxic masculinity by Terry Crews - 'You've been taught that pride is a manly thing, that pride is a good thing. Male pride causes wars, millions of people have died because of male pride, because one man would not back down'
*Gendered subjectivities: The nexus between femininity in Zimbabwe
*Transnational African Feminism
*Why 'impostor syndrome' hits women and women of colour harder 
*Female child soldiers often go unseen    #RedHandDay  
*Decolonising emotional well-being and mental health in development: African feminist innovations
*Indian inventor creates 'lipstick gun' for women's safety against sexual harassment
*Mandating men: Towards gender equality in Myanmar  #masculinities  #gender equality
*WPS Toolkit in Somalia
*When schools closed, Americans turned to their usual back-up plan: Mothers    https://m-gates/3pFUrI6
*QAROT: Global dataset on electoral gender quota adoption implementation and reform over time (1947-2015)
*American Psychological Association (APA) links masculinity ideology to homophobia & misogyny
*Her husband died. Then his family shaved her head & made her strip beside his grave
*Decolonising emotional well-being & mental health in development: African fminist innovations
*Dalit women fight for land rights in Punjab: They have formed a Cooperative and now cultivate their own land
*The 'Tiger Mother', America's top parent?
*The truth about unwanted arousal
*Africa's most powerful women - Forbes
*Gillette's campaign & toxic masculinity
*US: Equality trends to watch in 2019
*7 books on Feminism
*Diamond Gizzer, billionaire diamond trader, 65, dies in Paris during penis enlargement surgery
*Data can be sexist
*The woman most likely to get promoted according to science
*Why research on gender 7 conflict matters conflict-matters/
*Women and the Boko Haram insurgency   https:///
*Protecting women's space in politics
*Invisible Women: Data bias in a world designed for men - Caroline Criado-Perez
*International Women's Day (IWD) needs to return to its radical roots
*Unequal gender relations can drive conflict and violence: 'Engaging with men & masculinities in fragile/conflict-affected settings
*Real men hate toxic masculinity
*What happens to a woman's body in her 40s
*How neuro-science is exploding the myth of male & female brains
*Eliminating gender disparities in business performance in Africa
*The pitfalls of data gender gap
*A new condom emphasises consent by requiring 4 hands to open the package   https://edition.cnn/2019/04/10/health/condom-consent-four-hands-trnd/
*From 'The Second Sex' to 'Gender Trouble' - Butler's hat tip to Simon de Beauvoir  #Gender&Identity
*How a hackneyed romantic ideal is used to stigmatise polyarmoury hackneyed-romantic-ideal-is-used-to-stigmatise-polyarmoury
*The war on women in Abuja
*Women & too much sunscreen: Why avoiding the sun could damage your health
*#MeToo: Africa & the politics of transnational activism
*CSOs, NGOs protest in Abuja over harassment of women
*Lightening the mental load that keeps women down
*About Menopause
*How women can re-invent themselves at any age
*Nigeria's Chimamanda Adichie named 'Woman of the Decade' by ThisDay Newspaper
*7 most powerful African queens in history
*Utah Senators unanimously pass Bill to de-criminalise polygamy 
*Texas Bill would allow death penalty for women who get abortions
*Gender & Human security: African perspectives
*UNSCR 1325: The connection between gender & security
*Women are happier without children or a spouse
*The role of women in countering violent extremism (CVE): The Nigerian experience with BH
*Sexual harassers at top of aid sector are 'too well-connected' to be held to account
*The Palgrave Handbook of African Women's Studies - Olajumoke Yacob-Halso & Toyin Falola (eds)
*The rise and fall of Elizabeth Holmes, Silicon Valley's startup queen
*How to let go of someone you love   https://www,
*Canada announces new funding model to support women's equality globally
*Violation of rights: ECOWAS court grants 3 Nigerian women N18m compensation
*Alabama passes Bill to chemically castrate child sex offenders
*High heels at work are necessary says Japan's Labour Minister
*Returning from the land of Jihad: The fate of women associated with BH
*Meet Uganda's mother of 42 kids: Sold into marriage at 12
*Male birth control pill passes human safety tests
*How to stop ruminating over very little things
*What being Malala's father has taught me about feminism
*Reps to Buhari: Appoint more women into office
*Nigerian women condemn Buhari's Ministerial list, write Senate
*More than 50,000 women killed by intimate partners in 2017 - Study
*2019 Gender Report (GEM)
*Social stress linked to bone density loss in post-menopausal women
*The SDGs: A tool to make a difference for women in conflict
*Table etiquette
*Till genetics do us part: Why the success of your marriage is encoded at birth
*Jack & Jill and the feminine filter/masculine mantra
*Intersectionality & accountability: The missing component on men & masculinities work in the #MeToo era - MenEngage
*Why women's equality is not the norm worldwide: Reflections on the IWD
*How to become a feminist dad
*Factors affecting anti-FGM programmes
*Female labour force participation is more than economics
*What feminists can do for boys   htps//
*Gender equality in West Africa: The key role of social norms
*Sudan needs women at its negotiating table
*Why equality can't wait
*How neuroscience is exploding the myth of male and female brains
*Sperm sorting method could prevent girls being born
*Rosa Parks honoured with a Barbie Doll on Women Equality Day
*Inclusion of women: Why is the protection of minorities important?
*The importance of women in peace processes
* 5 paceful protests that led to change
*Africa's tallest building, designed mostly by women, opens in South Africa   https://cnn,it/2oVQ9S4
*Female orgasm may have evolved from a trigger for ovulation
*Police uncover another baby factory in Lagos, rescue pregnant girls
*Melinda Gates commits $1b to gender equality
*The most balanced gender cabinets in the world today
*There are more single working women than ever, & that's changing the US economy
*Women & girls' causes received only 1.6% of all charitable donations in the US
*Women make up only 14% of the total in the ranking of the wealthiest Americans in 2019
*Jimmy & Rosalyn Carter just became the longest married Presidential couple
*Mother's attention may shape baby's hormone system and temperament
*The hidden cost of doing it all for women   harpersbazaar,com/culture/features/a29307038/fair-play-eve-rodsky/
*Patriarchy, Gender & Peace
*WHO calls for ban on virginity tests, including those used by the Police
*Women's writing began much earlier than supposed, finds academic
*6 things most successful women have in common
*Kids are master manipulators, so use game theory against them
*What women think about #gender parity #harassment #jobmarket #feminism
*The Vagina Bible: Beating bad science on women's sexual health
*How to tell the difference between persuasion & manipulation
*20 reasons Japanese women stay slim and don't look old
*What is gaslighting? 12 signs you could be experiencing it
*Global Gender Gap Report 2020
*'Marriage Story explores the pain and confusion of divorce
*The world's oldest couple - ages 106 & 105, celebrate their 80th wedding anniversary
*Why relationships change after baby
*Obama says women are 'indisputably better' at leading - BBC
*From cashier, Sanna Marin (34yrs old) to world's youngest Prime Minister: Finland's new leader breaks the mould
*NASA astronaut, Christina Koch, sets record for the longest spaceflight by a woman. Christina says 'Do what scares you!'
*Slovakia's first female President is an environmental activist
*Cameroonian girls on Nigeria's border married off to escape BH
*Gender equality matters in COVID-19 response
*Toxic masculinity is going to get all of us 'killed'
*WPS Agenda @ 20: Setbacks, Progress & Way Forward    https;//
*Small wins can make a big impact on gender equality
*Covid lockdown: A generation of teenage girls & women subjected to domestic violence (DV)
*No girl is too young to fight for her rights


Sunday 11 November 2018


The National Anti-Corruption Strategy (NACS) was the subject matter for discourse under the auspices of CDD in Abuja on the 30th of October, 2018. The meeting of the representative of the Minister of Justice and Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami (SAN), with CSOs is a follow-up to the inauguration of a 17 member Monitoring & Evaluation Committee in September. The NACS was launched on July 5, 2017. Over a year after the launch of the NACS, how far have the contents been implemented for the 4-year plan (2017-2021)?

The fact that CSOs should be the drivers of the 5 pillars of NACS was emphasised. The 5 pillars are:

1) Prevention
2) Public Engagement
3) Ethical Re-orientation
4) Enforcement
5) Sanctions/Recovery & Management of crime proceeds

Some of the CSOs present were One Campaign, Open Society Foundation, Trust Africa, Integrity Organisation, etc. Lilian Ekeanyanwu, Head, Technical Unit on Governance & Anti-Corruption Reforms, TUGAR, Nigeria, remarked that too much emphasis is laid on prosecution to the neglect of prevention. With the launch of the Fiscal Responsibility Act, the focus shifted from apprehending the thief to prevention of theft. Prevention is always better/cheaper than prosecution. Some other strides in the area of prevention are: Justice sector reform, Public enlightenment, Risk assessment, deployment of NACS to states and LGAs with the attending challenges.

In my intervention, I said that that the NACS document needs to be further democratised through translation into pidgin and the major Nigerian languages. Besides, the link to the NACS document should be widely circulated. More NGOs/CBOs need to come on board for the successful implementation of the strategy. I also talked about the importance of technology in the anti-corruption war - the less person-person contact, the more transparent the process.

Soji Apampa, CEO Integrity Organisation reiterated the fact that the objective of the NACS is to instill in the citizens the fact that honesty pays. In this regard, we should note the Corporate Governance Rating System (CGRS) for more efficiency in the OGS. Many companies have surrendered themselves to the CGRS because such a rating precedes the company's listing on the Corporate Governance Table (CGT). Directors now have to write exams to show that they understand why they are on the Board! Building integrity seems easier to sell in the private sector than in the public sector. There is also the alignment of incentives for Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs).

The following are some of the resolutions at the meeting:

*The NACS is a citizen-oriented document that should be constantly fine-tuned and interrogated.
*The average citizen believes that unemployment is a more serious problem than anti-corruption. More advocacy is necessary to explain why corruption could indeed be the cause of unemployment!
*CSOs working on anti-corruption should collaborate. They should stop working in silos.
*Citizenship engagement should be prioritised.
*There are global norms for anti-corruption: deployment of technology/OGP/OpenBudget, etc
*There should be total integration of CSOs into the NACS. CSOs should be represented in the steering committee.
*Presidential Initiative for Continuous Auditing (PICA) should continue to be vigilant.
*Wanted: CSOs engagement plan from MDAs.
*Translate the NACS into pidgin and major Nigerian languages.
*There should be collaboration on the NACS with MDAs through the structures of NOA.
*The right base-line data for the NACS needs to be established and adopted. A good starting point could be the 'Scoping Survey' by TOGAR.

This meeting was a healthy interaction between CSOs and government on the NACS. More of such collaborative engagements for the citizens' benefit are welcome...

Related Links

*National Anti-Corruption Strategy (NACS) - Federal Ministry of Justice
*An evaluation of the Nigerian National Anti-Corruption Strategy
*FG sets up 17-member anti-corruption strategy monitoring, evaluation...
*Why corruption thrives in Nigeria by NEITI
*Weak ethical framework fuels corruption in Nigeria - Report
*Role of business integrity in national transformation
*Nigerian civil society and the fight against corruption
*Corruption & Governance
*Explainer: How Transparency International (TI) assessed Nigeria's corruption level
*The cost & benefit of battling corruption for young people
*How N500b Ecological Fund was siphoned and diverted in 15 years - Documentary premiered 25th January, 2021

Sunday 4 November 2018


On the 30th of October, 2018, the West Africa Network for Peace (WANEP) in collaboration with the Economic Community for West African States (ECOWAS), the African Union (AU) and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) of Nigeria launched Election Violence Monitoring, Analysis & Mitigation Project (EMAM). The project is a four-month long situational monitoring, analysis and mitigation of violence during the forthcoming general elections in Nigeria scheduled for February 2019 which was launched in Abuja. EMAM is designed to support local and national response architecture that link Early Warning (EW) with informed response to prevent or mitigate identified threats capable of affecting the peaceful conduct of the Nigerian elections.

Validating indicators would be developed to inform specific monitoring and reporting of violent election threats by community monitors before, during and after elections. The representative of ECOWAS EW Directorate, Maimouna Konate said that WANEP has supported the operationalising of the ECOWAS EW mechanism. WANEP's National EWS (NEWS) managers across the region are part of the ECOWAS Field Monitoring teams that populate the ECOWARN system with real time data on a daily and weekly basis.

The Executive Director of WANEP, Dr. Chukwuemeka Eze, noted that WANEP was collaborating with ECOWAS because the responsibility of ensuring that elections in Africa are free, fair and credible cannot be shouldered by ECOWAS, the AU and the member states alone. CSOs in these countries are critical stakeholders also. I agree with this assertion. That is why in the last few weeks many of my posts on this Blog have been about how to ensure non-violence in the forth-coming elections. If we get the elections right, then the legitimacy of the winner is assured in the eyes of the electorate! The EMAM project is in furtherance of the WANEP/ECOWAS/AU partnership for peace and security in West Africa in line with the MoU. I intend to keep watching that space for further developments...

'Let a thousand flowers bloom'. We cannot have enough of this and similar initiatives aimed at preventing violence in Nigeria's elections...

This Blog Post is adapted from the ECOWAS write-up: