Boko Haram’s Sources Of Funds Revealed
Following the unabated acts of terrorism perpetrated by the Islamic religious sect, Yusufiyya – which later became Boko Haram, since 2009, many questions have been asked by Nigerians and the international communities.
Prominent among these questions is how the militant group is raising funds to procure sophisticated weapons which they use to carry out their heinous attacks across Nigeria?
However, Premium Times reports that since 2009, the deadly sect has continued to deploy various tactics to sustain its resolve in undermining the Nigerian state.
It was gathered that in the onset, the sect began to embark on selective killings and maiming of politicians and security agencies.
Later on, according to the report, the terror group acquired the know-how on how to make Improvised Explosive Devices, IEDs, which it used mostly on security operatives, security formations and churches within and around Borno State.
In a bid to “promote the Jihad of God,” as they claim, the Islamist sect went from terror attack to attacking banks and other financial institutions, as well as the robbery of bullion vans in which millions of Naira were at different occasions stolen.
Between 2010 and 2012, the group resorted to extorting high personalities in Nigeria by sending text messages with threats on their lives if millions of Naira were not delivered to them at a designated rendezvous or harassing their victims by dropping sealed threat letters with a piece of live bullet asking for money.
When the presence of the Joint Task Force, JTF, continued to grow and increased development of counter intelligence by the Department of State Security, DSS, the Boko Haram sect resorted to kidnapping.
On January 30, 2012, the late spokesman of Boko Haram, Abul Qaqa had in a teleconference with journalists threatened that they would soon embark on abduction of spouses and children of security operatives and public office holders, for allegedly detaining their (Boko Haram) family members.
The terrorists did not start their threat until early this year, when the sect embarked on a ransom-driven kidnap of civilians. Most of their targets often gained their freedom after the payment of huge money by either government or relatives of the captives.
The spokesman of JTF, Sagir Musa, on April 28, issued a caveat warning to residents of Maiduguri and environs that the Boko Haram had resort to kidnapping prominent citizen with the aim of getting money from their relatives.
Mr. Musa’s statement read, “Intelligence available to the Task Force has indicated that Boko Haram Terrorists have resolved to concentrate more on kidnappings than robbery. They alleged that kidnapping is more lucrative, less dangerous and requires short time to plan and execute. Similarly, a special kidnapping squad has been earmarked and tasked by the Boko Haram sect to kidnap persons who could be wealthy relations, politicians, business women/ men, traditional rulers, senior civil servants and foreigners alike.”
The above statement was made after the Boko Haram sect had carried out several successful kidnaps for ransom.
Prominent personalities in Nigeria and many other people, private civilians, are believed to have been kidnapped by the militants and likely paid heavy ransoms to gain their freedom without anyone knowing. While those who could not afford such heavy ransoms are alleged to have been killed.
The belief in security circles in Borno is that the sect increased its kidnap activities to fund its various violent operations across Northern Nigeria.
Many had hoped and are still hoping that the declaration of a State of Emergency in Borno and the subsequent massive deployment of troops there would halt the kidnap and other criminal activities of the sect.