Nigeria: July 27, 2000


One of the larger, and better organized vigilante groups in the lawless southeast, "the Bakassi Boys", have incurred the wrath of the police for being too aggressive. The police have been ordered to crack down, especially in cases where the vigilantes refuse to turn their prisoners over to the police, or simply kill the suspects on the spot (usually in some gruesome fashion). That won't be easy. There are three large vigilante organizations operating in Nigeria, all more or less tolerated by the police. In the delta, there is the Egbesu Boys and in the southwest is OPC (Odua People's Congress), which has gotten into trouble of late for it's political activities. There is reasonable fear that these thousands or organized vigilantes may form the nucleus of local armies.  


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