On Buratai’s statement

My considered opinion is that Mr. Buratai was a really bad COAS. But on his recent statements regarding Boko Haram, I completely agree with him. To be honest, 20 years is probably a conservative estimate for the end of Boko Haram.

A decade ago, the RAND Corporation in the US published a study about insurgencies, in which they studied 89 different insurgencies. In the study, they concluded that the typical insurgency has a 10-year shelf life unless of course certain conditions were not met.

First, they concluded that pseudodemocracies had the least chance of beating an insurgency.

Second, they concluded that frequent policy changes helped insurgencies last longer.

Third, they concluded that the more splinter groups in an insurgency, the longer it was likely to last.

Then, they also said that there are no shortcuts to counterintelligence operations.

There is one country that has met all these conditions for a long-lasting insurgency, and that is Colombia. Another that meets these conditions?

Nigeria.

To put it simply, Buratai is right. Read the rest of my thoughts in today’s BusinessDay.

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Cheta Nwanze

Using big data to understand West Africa one country (or is it region?) at a time.