continues in the Moslem north, where religious fanatics are becoming more
violent, and in the oil rich Niger River delta, where locals are trying to gain
control of more of the oil revenue. In
the north, politicians are using religion to deal with the general disgust with
corrupt officials. People are urged to go after Christians and those who are
not religious enough. The government corruption continues, and it's difficult
to argue with the call for "more religion." This is an old scam,
world wide, and works particularly well in Moslem countries, because Islam is
quite explicit about how the religious should get involved in secular
government, especially if there is corruption and bad rule in general.
Meanwhile, in the south, tribe
based groups continue to demand, or just take, a larger cut of the oil wealth.
Most of the violence is more criminal than political, with immediate economic
gain taking priority. The gangs that
politicians long subsidized, for attacking opponents and intimidating voters,
are increasingly independent. Recently, in the south west, one of these gangs
kidnapped eleven local politicians and are holding them for $4 million in
ransom. The greed of the gangs works in the governments favor. As long as the
gangs are intent on getting rich, they aren't trying too hard to replace the
government. But at the same time, government control grows weaker as the
anarchy spreads. Government anti-corruption and reform attempts are crippled by
the extent of the corruption throughout the government.