Tuesday, 4 June 2013

Jonathan Officially Declares Boko Haram a Terrorist Organisation

Jonathan has formally approved the
proscription of Boko
Haram and authorized the
gazetting of an order
declaring the group's
activities as acts of terrorism. The order, which has been
gazetted as the Terrorism
(Prevention) (Proscription
Order) Notice 2013, affects
both Boko Haram (Jamaatu
Ahlis-Sunna Liddaawati Wal Jihad) and Jama'atu Ansarul
Muslimina Fi Biladis Sudan
(Ansaru). The order was
approved by President
Jonathan pursuant to section 2
0f the Terrorism Prevention Act, 2011 (As Amended). A statement by the Special
Adviser to the President on
Media and Publicity, Rueben
Abati, said this "officially brings
the activities of both groups
within the purview of the Terrorism Prevention Act and
any persons associated with
the two groups can now be
legally prosecuted and
sentenced to penalties specified
in the Act". The statement said the
proscription order warns the
general public that any person
"participating in any form of
activities involving or
concerning the collective intentions of the said groups
will be violating the provisions
of the Terrorism Prevention
Act". Section 5 (1) of the act
prescribes a term of
imprisonment of not less than
20 years for any person who
"knowingly, in any manner,
directly or indirectly, solicits or renders support for the
commission of an act of
terrorism or to a terrorist
group. "For the purposes of subsection
(1) of section, "support"
includes - (a) incitement to
commit a terrorist act through
the internet, or any electronic
means or through the use of printed materials or through
the dissemination of terrorist
information; (b) receipt or
provision of material assistance,
weapons including biological,
chemical or nuclear weapons, explosives, training,
transportation, false
documentation or identification
to terrorists or terrorist
groups; (c) receipt or provision
of information or moral assistance, including invitation
to adhere to a terrorist or
terrorist group; (d) entering or
remaining in a country for the
benefit of, or at the direction
of or in association with a terrorist group; or (e) the
provision of, or making
available, such financial or
other related services
prohibited under this Act or as
may be prescribed by regulations made pursuant to
this Act." Boko Haram is currently
engaging Nigerian forces in a
battle in the North Eastern
part of the country. The group
has claimed responsibility or is
blamed for the killing of thousands of people since it
launched its violent offensive in
2009. Ansaru carries out fewer
attacks and largely focuses on
the kidnap of foreigners and
attack on security personnel. The president declared a State
of Emergency in Borno, Yobe,
and Adamawa in order to
curtail the activities of the
insurgents after other options
appeared not to be working. The U.S. also officially labeled
the Boko Haram leader,
Abubakar Shekau, a terrorist
and placed a $7 million (N1.1
billion) bounty for his capture.

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