Conflict briefing notes: conflict briefing No.34, February 2015

Conflict briefing notes: conflict briefing No.34, February 2015

There was improvement in the security situation in the North East Nigeria in March because sustained attacks by the Nigerian military and the cut-of f of food sources and fuel supply have af fected the capacity of Jamaatu Ahlis-Sunna Liddaawati Wal Jihad (JAS) to continue to launch major attacks. JAS was forced to rely mostly on female suicide bombers to attack soft targets and ambush soldiers as many of its members were killed and injured in air strikes launched by the military and a growing number of its members reportedly surrendered to the military. Many JAS captives were also freed and relocated to the IDP camps.

There was also more evidence of organized crime in various parts of the country with incidence of kidnapping for ransom and rituals, armed robbery, piracy, oil bunkering, cattle theft, cultism, and drug abuse reported in the month. Some of these incidents threatened peace and security in parts of the country as they reinforced inter-group suspicions and mobilizations. There were also tensions in various parts of the country as a result of conflicts among political factional group conflicts, protests by some youths and electoral violence.

Another source of tension in inter-group relations was the introduction of new policies by government. For instance, the plan by Kaduna state government to introduce new laws to regulate the activities of religious groups has generated tensions as concerned Muslim and Christian organizations fear it would af fect exercise of religious freedom. The fact that this proposed law was preceded by government's plan to evict individuals and churches occupying land reportedly without approval has raised speculations that the present Kaduna state government is prosecuting an anti-Christian agenda.

The delay in the passage of the 2016 appropriation bill has undermined the capacity of the Federal Government to cover its personnel costs with a resultant delay in payment of workers' salaries across several federal agencies. The situation has been further compounded by the persistent scarcity of fuel and the attendant rise in price of transportation and goods across the country . The hardship occasioned by these developments has evoked anti-government sentiments amongst the populace and is eroding the public goodwill and popularity of the Buhari administration.

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