'Fulani Herdsmen Are Deadlier Than Boko Haram'
Over the last 7 years Boko Haram has emerged as a ruthless and salvage driven sect that has killed thousands of Nigerians and forced about 2 million others to flee their homes.
However, an intelligence group has rated pastoral conflicts as the deadliest form of extremism ahead of the Boko Haram terror group in Nigeria. SBM Intelligence quotes statistics collated from attacks and fatalities in 3 categories of security challenges in 2016, also including militancy in the Niger Delta.
The think-tank noted Boko Haram remains the most active threat in terms of frequency of attacks.
SBM reported, the tide has shifted and 75 percent of the fatalities in the Boko Haram insurgency are now Boko Haram fighters themselves.
The average number of fatalities per Boko Haram attack has been significantly reduced to 17, implying a reduction in the fighting capabilities of the terrorists.
On the other hand, the pastoral conflict is the most deadly threat, with 470 victims killed as a result of cattle rustling, and 1,425 killed in attacks involving Fulani herdsmen.
The average number of fatalities per attack was high at 30 deaths per attack by Fulani herdsmen, while the average for cattle rustling stood at 39 per attack.
SBM's report shows there were four times as many attacks on communities by herdsmen than incidents of cattle rustling.
“Unlike the Boko Haram insurgency, the majority of the deaths in the pastoral conflict are not the belligerent herdsmen, but residents of the attacked communities.”
SBM noted while there is a significant number of Niger Delta militant attacks on oil facilities, the average number of fatalities per attack was the lowest; at 3 per attack.
Nigerians are praying for sustainable peace and the military appears stretched with Boko Haram causing untold suffering in the northeast; herdsmen are wrecking havoc in the northwest, while militants are carrying out attacks on oil facilities in the oil rich Niger Delta in the south.