Nigeria is still the third most terrorised country in the world, according to the 2018 Global Terrorism Index.
The report, released on Wednesday, blamed the spate of terrorism in Nigeria and the “increase in violence involving Fulani extremists even as deaths committed by Boko Haram are falling”.
Nigeria is ranked only below Iraq and Afghanistan, both in first and second positions respectively.
In 2018 alone, hundreds of Nigerians have been killed in attacks by suspected herdsmen as well as clashes between the herders and farmers/communities.
States worst hit in the attacks are Plateau, Benue, Zamfara, and Taraba, among others.
The report, however, noted that when compared to the peak of “terrorist deaths” in 2014, “the largest falls in the number of deaths occurred in Iraq, Nigeria, and Pakistan, with falls of 6,466, 5,950, and 912 deaths respectively”.
“Boko Haram, once the world’s deadliest terror group, has experienced a significant decline since its peak in 2014. However, the group remains the most active terrorist organisation in Nigeria and until 2017 was the deadliest terror group in sub-Saharan Africa,” the report said.
“Nigeria’s counterterrorism response in combatting Boko Haram has been interrupted by the emergence of other extremist groups, most notably the Fulani herder extremists.
“The Fulani herder extremists have attacked civilians and military forces in the country. However, the sizeable drop in deaths and terror incidents since 2014 indicate the success of Nigeria’s Civilian Join Task Force and international coalitions.
“Alongside its counterinsurgency plan, the Nigerian government also struggles with negotiations and reintegration efforts regarding its long-term strategy to deal with Boko Haram and its associates.”
HEADWAY IN SIGHT?
President Muhammadu Buhari has repeatedly blamed the herdsmen-related killings on climate change.
He also says some militants infiltrated herders, after entering the country through Libya.
While the clashes between the herders and farmers have been blamed on open grazing, some Nigerians have proposed ranching as a way out.