Ghana and Nigeria are developing joint plans to deal with the growing power of Nigerian oil smuggling gangs in Ghana. The oil is taken from punctured pipelines, into barrels, small barges or tanker trucks, and then transferred to small coastal tankers, which evade or bribe navy patrols to get their cargo to Ghana, where the oil is sold into the legitimate market, and exported. The income from this trade supports many of the criminal gangs in the Nigerian oil region (the Niger Delta). But increased military and police pressure in the last few years has put the Nigerian gangs on the defensive, forcing them to move some of their operations to Ghana.
March 3, 2011: A bomb (apparently a grenade) went off at a PDP (ruling party) election rally in the Niger Delta (Niger state), killing ten. Boko Haram denied responsibility, and the motive was probably connected to the upcoming elections. Opposition politicians were suspected.
March 2, 2011: In northern Borno State, three armed members of Boko Haran fired on two policemen and killed them.
February 24, 2011: In central Nigeria, Fulani tribal militias are again attacking villages belonging to the Tiv Tribe, leaving nearly 40 dead, and over 10,000 refugees. The tribal feuds over land are made worse by religious differences. The local governments have kept a lid on the violence for the last few years, but the unresolved land disputes, plus cultural differences between the Fulani herders and Tiv farmers, kept the animosity alive.
February 22, 2011: Outside of Jos, in Central Nigeria, a dozen people were killed during a nighttime raid. It's a rough neighborhood, made deadlier by cheap AK-47s and many old animosities. About a thousand people have died in and around Jos in the last year because of religious and tribal violence. There are also family feuds, some of them quite old.