A rapid rise in anti-immigrant violence has emerged in South Africa, with at least seven people killed and many more local immigrants’ properties and businesses destroyed. In response to this wave of xenophobic crime, the South African government announced the deployment of troops to areas that have been most affected by the violence, including parts of Durban in Kwa-Zulu Natal and the impoverished district of Alexandra in Johannesburg.
Published April 10, 2015 | By Katie Cornelius
After two days of voting in the most closely contested presidential election in Nigeria’s history, Attahiru Jega, the chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), announced the final electoral results in favor of opposition candidate and former military ruler Muhammadu Buhari. Buhari’s victory marks a historic occasion for the country considering an opposition candidate has never before defeated the ruling party in a presidential election. At last count, Buhari claimed 15.4 million votes over incumbent president Goodluck Jonathan’s 13.3 million. Despite some technical issues with electronic card readers as well as insecurity arising from the sporadic targeting of voters by Boko Haram militants in the Northeast, the National Democratic Institute’s international elections observers overall hailed the presidential election as smooth and orderly in a preliminary statement offered on March 30.
Published March 28, 2015 | By Ania Skinner
Jamāʻat Ahl as-Sunnahlid-daʻwa wal-Jihād (JAS), known widely as Boko Haram, has employed suicide bombers as a terrorist tactic in their insurgency against the Nigerian government since 2011. As of mid-2014, however, reports began to emerge of an alarming new dimension: the use of young women and girls in suicide missions. The first reported case of a female suicide bomber occurred on June 8, 2014, when a woman detonated her bomb near army barracks in Gombe state of Nigeria. Since that time, the rate of suicide bombings carried out by women has steadily increased.
Published March 25, 2015 | By Hannah Blyth
As the tense countdown continues to the Nigerian elections – scheduled to take place this Saturday, March 28 – gender based violence is on the rise. This is not just endemic to Nigeria, but can be linked to wider issues of negative gender attitudes and wider violence in the region. Recent data complied as part of the Violence Affecting Women and Girls (VAWG) program, a collaboration between FFP and local partner NSRP, suggests that gender-based violence has been steadily rising in the pre-2015 Nigerian election period. This is consistent with the rise in general violence and insecurity in the lead up to the Nigerian elections, as detailed a recent FFP Election Violence Update.
Published March 24, 2015 | By The Fund for Peace
Following the party primaries in late 2014, political jockeying has continued between and among parties. The postponement of the elections originally slated for February 14, due to insecurity in the Northeast, appears to have raised the level of uncertainty. In some states, gangs and cult groups have taken sides. In others, political rallies have escalated to violence. Even issues not directly election-related such as communal tensions and criminality have been affected. Logistical challenges around the distribution of Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) have further complicated matters. Unlike previous cycles, this election looks to be a real contest between the ruling party and the opposition, which has raised the stakes considerably, particularly in states like Rivers and Edo.
Published March 10, 2015
The Fund for Peace (FFP) is strongly committed to continuing its support of the Voluntary Principles on Security & Human Rights (VPs). We publicly endorse the VPs on our website and undertake efforts to raise public awareness of their existence as well as to support information sharing between those involved regarding implementation. We greatly welcome feedback from other participants as to how we could more strongly support the VPs going forward.
Nigeria’s national elections take place exactly ten days from today, with state-level elections two weeks thereafter. Below are six policy actions that we believe can be taken today, and every day, from now through the election and post-election period to mitigate violence within and between communities.
Published February 1, 2015 | By Patricia Taft*
The number of overall incidents and fatalities reported in 2014 across the eight target states shows the highest levels of violence since 2009. While types of violence vary across states and time periods, the North East remains the most violent region, led by Borno State. VAWG has followed this national trend, with the overall situation deteriorating during 2014 and into January 2015. With steadily increasing VAWG incident reports year on year, reported incidents rose by over 30% in 2014 from 2013 based on Nigeria Watch data.
FFP Event - February 9, 2015
With Nigeria's general elections just around the corner, many observers have noted that the potential for violence is elevated. We invite you to a forum at 2:00 pm on Monday, February 9 to discuss the current situation as it has evolved, possible scenarios of violence which may occur, and what civil society actors have been doing to get ahead of what otherwise could be a serious challenge for peace and security in Nigeria.
Published January 26, 2015 | By Nate Haken*
Among the largest of the oil-producing Nigerian states, Rivers had been at the heart of the Niger Delta militancy until 2009. Now the state remains beset with a different array of political, communal, and criminal issues, including cult and gang-related violence, protests, and kidnappings. Rivers is a pivotal state in the upcoming February 2015 Nigeria general elections and has experienced an elevated risk of election-related violence throughout 2014.