Letter To Abu Qada of Boko Haram By Adeolu Ademoyo

Adeolu Ademoyo

Dear Mr. Abu Qada

Though you have not advanced civil dialogue as a strategy that we Nigerians are known for resolving our challenges, you will understand my insistence to employ this our trademark tool to challenge the soundness and correctness of your arguments for murdering, by current counts, two thousand Nigerians in order to realize your goals.


I am aware that some people have deployed a Marxist argument to locate the Boko Haram campaign as a “class revolt”. But given that a “class revolt” is between a presumed “class enemy” and the “system,” and given that 99.9 per cent of your victims are actually working people and the very poor in our community, I am persuaded to characterize your campaign as a pogrom against innocent Nigerians. Rather than mischaracterize it as “class revolt” therefore, I will rather say it straddles between class cannibalism, class fratricide and infanticide.


For this simple reason therefore, the class argument is a rigged one designed to soften the horrific effect of pogrom by making it look as political killing. There is no language in the world today that will equate cannibalism, fratricide, and infanticide to political killings. They remain what they are; acts of evil.


A variant of the class argument has been advanced by two eminent Nigerians- a former governor of the Central Bank-Mr. Adamu Ciroma and the present governor of Central Bank –Mr. Sanusi Lamido. Mr. Sanusi Lamido has explained that your pogrom of Nigerians has something to do with the present principle of derivation used to allocate revenue to state governments. I hope to one day engage Mr. Ciroma and Mr. Lamido separately, but I think it is morally problematic to refuse to separate an economic problem from the class cannibalism you are engaged in as Mr. Ciroma and Mr. Sanusi have attempted but both failed to do.


Some have argued that the opponents of the present president-President Goodluck Jonathan are using you. To this argument, you have countered vigorously that the opponents of President Jonathan are not sponsoring you. In other words, you are motivated by your own agenda. What this means is that you want to and have claimed responsibility for your actions.


While you have not subscribed to the previous arguments, you have nevertheless openly canvassed the religious argument.  These are the elements of your manifesto.  You want to establish Sharia all over Nigeria. To realize this, you have tried to articulate how Nigeria under Sharia will look like. You claim that Boko Haram is ready to tolerate that “non-believers” should co-exist with Muslims because during the time of Prophet Mohammed (PBH), this happened.


I guess my problem with you is that you have not stated why Sharia Law should govern a country like Nigeria, which is proudly multi-religious and multinational. That bothers me because I come from an immediate family where people joyously, peacefully and filially profess different religious faiths including Islam. We attend our mosques and churches together. And nothing follows except peace and love for one another. I have asked members of my family who are Muslims about you. Their answer shocked me. They say you are not a Muslim. Aghast, I held my breath. I asked why? They say you are a murderer and Muslims are not murderers. Given that my family members who are Muslims are categorical in their answer, I am still wondering who is right between them and you, and your Boko Haram Movement.


But the point that interests me most is the so-called Marxist rationalization for your cannibalism, fratricide and infanticide. I am reminded of the famous Marxist thesis that “Religion is the opium of the people”.  Look, Mr. Abu Qada, I consider myself a theist too, So my interest here is not whether Marx is right or wrong. I am just wondering whether you understand the full implication of the reference to opium. If opium is like cocaine, a drug, then based on what Mr. Karl Marx says, it follows that religion is like a “drug”, which deadens people and makes them lose their senses, profess silly notions, and misinterpret reality, which is why, I believe, Mr. Marx calls it false consciousness or something like that.


Now this is the point, and I will limit myself to facts and not interpretation. You and and your group, Boko Haram, have murdered about two thousand Nigerians. In case you do not know, qualitatively, your action is beginning to get close to genocide. Based on this, your religious argument and the Marxist and economic arguments cannot be both right at the same time. Given that you have murdered Nigerian working people, you have committed class cannibalism, fratricide and infanticide. Therefore, if your religious argument is right, you lose the Marxist and economic argument because I do not think that Mr. Karl Marx is a class cannibal who will approve that you deploy pogrom at workers. If the Marxist explanation of your action is right, then you lose the religious argument because in the eyes of Marx you are “drugged” with respect to what Mr. Marx says about religion and opium. In fact, you seem to have justified Mr. Marx by your claim that you love killing Nigerian parents and their children in advancing a religious cause as if they are chickens.  Mr. Abu Qada, those are your words, not mine.


As a human being and a parent, my own take on this is that we are not happy with you but we Nigerians have our response to you, we will resolve you because we actually understand you. In response to your cannibalism, fratricide and infanticide, which are acts of evil,  we answer you in a moral voice that we Nigerians must not retaliate. This is because to retaliate is to commit the same evil which you, Mr. Abu Qada and your Boko Haram, are guilty of.


In African cultures and thought to which I am familiar, all forms of evils are èw?? which violate our perceptual space, a commonly owned estate-the directly perceived public sphere. What we directly perceive in the public is that you, Mr. Abu Qada, and Boko Haram have murdered Nigerian citizens who are Muslims, Christians, “southerners” “northerners”. You probably even brought in non-Nigerian citizens to murder Nigerians, and you call yourself a Nigerian. You have murdered Nigerian children who are worshipping in the mosque and in the church with their parents.


Well, Mr. Qada, I do not know if you are a father, but I am a very proud one, and because you have murdered Nigerian children I look at the eyes of my own children and cry out in pain and agony. Some questions are due here. What kind of human being are you Mr. Abu Qada of Boko Haram who apparently takes delight in murdering Nigerian children in mosques, in churches, playing-grounds, and on the streets?


Frankly, I simply sigh, and say we Nigerians forgive you because we love our country, we will not allow you to define it for us in the name and image of some entity that is foreign to us. You are forgiven but do stop this mindless genocide of innocent Nigerian mothers, fathers, children, workers, hawkers, market women and men. We have no desire or fancy for Al Qaeda. Here in lies the moral point which we Nigerians at home and in the Diaspora will use to overcome you. 


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