Strategies of Boko Haram and IPOB in Nigeria’s Postcolonial Context: A Critique

The main objective of the study is to examine how the post-colonial character of the Nigerian state engendered the emergence and strategies of IPOB and Boko Haram in the state. The study is anchored on the postcolonial state theory. Qualitative (documentary) method was employed for data collection, while qualitative-descriptive method of analysis was adopted. The paper contends that both Boko Haram and IPOB are manifestations of the dissatisfactions arising from the inadequacies of the Westphalian state system imposed on the kingdoms, empires and principalities which hitherto existed in the area today known as Nigeria. Both Boko Haram and IPOB extensively adopted anti-state propaganda targeted at disparaging the postcolonial Nigerian state. Hence, while Boko Haram’s propaganda launch onslaught against the colonial education system, the IPOB proselytize secession as a panacea to lopsided federal structure tilting in favour of the North and responsible for economic and political ‘marginalization’ of the Igbo ethnic group. The central thesis of this study is that contradictions like insurgency and separatist movements are recurring features of postcolonial African states such as Nigeria. The study recommends inter alia that peace-building in Nigeria should address economic and political marginalization which engenders dissatisfaction among the masses, while access to education by youths should be enhanced.