No Peace without Forgiveness, Scanning 'Operation Safe Corridor' in Northeast Nigeria

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Centre for Peace and Strategic Studies, University of Ilorin


In the last two decades, Nigeria has held regular elections and witnessed relatively peaceful transfers of power between the ruling party and opposition, giving the impression that democracy has come to stay in the world's most populous Black nation. At the same time, activists have continued to challenge the elected leaders on many fronts (social justice, human rights and freedoms) under different labels. This paper takes a critical look at #EndSARS as a Twitter-based mobilization of young people to expose human rights abuses perpetrated by a section of the Nigeria Police Force. In the light of the consent theory of power, the paper reviewed the literature on the century-old practice of nonviolent direction in an attempt to address the question as to whether yesterday’s mobilization and training of activists under a recognized leadership has yielded to Internet-based campaigns of faceless protesters for good. Findings suggest that online activism attracts a great deal of poorly committed protesters alongside criminals with no one to take responsibility for violent outcomes. Government’s regulation of social media to fight the proliferation of fake news and terrorist attacks is likely to witness a revival of offline mobilization of nonviolent activists.



Democracy, Consent, Participation, Nigeria, Protest, EndSARS