Flash Fiction: Till Next Time.


Source: pinterest.com

My sweaty palm held the stock of the sawn off gun tightly while the other wrapped around the barrel. Shadows of the marauders were visible from under the door.

You fuckers are not getting away this time, I mouthed.

I woke up to the fuzzy sight of my wife’s breast amidst her agitated taps. She had been breastfeeding Oreoluwa.

Won tun tide o!’, she whispered.

In a frenzy, I reached for the gun wrapped in an old newspaper under the bed. I told the shaken woman to lock the door as I tiptoed to the foyer.

Facing the entrance door, I squeezed the trigger. Then two more times. No sound rang out.

Fuck! I didn’t collect the shells from Audu before he traveled.

The banging persisted. I dashed to the kitchen exit and tucked the firearm under a pile of dry twigs. I thereafter returned to let the robbers in.

April 4th, 2008

I had even forgotten about it- momentarily though. But the belated message, despite being cryptic, twitched my memory.

Nothing seemed out of the routine. The camry V20 had seen better days but it still delivered satisfactorily. Engaged with my phone in the passenger seat, nothing prepared me for what was to follow. My heart nearly left my chest. My life literally flashed before me.

Ehen! So this ees how e use tu happen!

It was a rainy Friday afternoon. There were 4 occupants in the car, including the driver. Descending the slope, just before the statue of the Three Wise Men of Lagos, the road wet, all was set for it to happen. Just like that, we collided with another vehicle, got pushed forward but restrained by the seat belt, momentum made me hit head on the glass, car swerved to hit the culvert and bounced back to the main road. Apparently, the steering wheel had lost connection with whatever it was supposed to connect with. Brake seemed not to work at that moment too. The exclamation of yee! yee!! from the driver did little to assuage the situation.

Me: So this is how I end?! 

All within less than 10 seconds. We drove for about another kilometre before pulling over at a fuel station to access the damage. Rain wasn’t going to stop anytime soon.

Day wasn’t over yet, the bridge had gotten flooded to the extent of vehicles wading through it like a regatta. A journey of less than 7 minutes took close to 4 hours to complete. Many stopped working when the floodwater invaded their engine. Survival of the fittest couldn’t have been more apt. Well, the good old camry waded through like a veteran, while revving like a roaring lion.

Got home to the warmth of my bed before shutting my eyes after an eventful day.

Islam Awareness: If Not You, Who? 

Back in secondary school, I was asked a seemingly funny question by a classmate. He asked, ‘Why do Muslims worship the moon?’. Taken aback, I bursted into laughter and asked Victor why he would think that. His reply was that he had been told that numerous times and that is why Muslims have the crescent on their emblem. Years later, more matured and armed with life experiences, I realize that Victor is not to blame- he only echoed what he was being exposed to.

Read!

In this age and time, the perception of Islam in the world is one in which a Muslim is not proud of. The perception of the deen as a violent, ignorant and backward religion permeates the polity. Right now, a Muslim, with his/her identifiable wear, is viewed with suspicion. Acts of terrorism taken in any part of the world have seen many innocent Muslims take a defensive stance. Many have been maimed and killed for being in the same religion with terrorists. The media has also not helped- with terminologies like Islamic terrorists and Islamic extremists, more people believe Islam is synonymous to a blood-thirsty monster.

According to Andrew Smith, people fear what they don’t understand and hate what they can’t conquer. Many of the people who antagonize Islam do so out of ignorance and few do it out of sheer wickedness. Using Smith’s quote, Islam can be seen as an unconquerable force that should be a source of pride for its adherents. However, despite this, it is still misunderstood.

The quest for changing mindsets about Islam should start with a conscious attempt at doing so. A working strategy should be in place. One of such is to embark on a massive intellectual discourse to change this notion. As it is widely held that it is the rain that grows flowers, not thunder, we need to raise our words and not our voice. It is not until one goes about shouting about how the deen is against all what it has been accused of that one reaches his desires.

In furtherance to this, one doesn’t need to be a conventional and professional writer for him to be able to make a difference. In this age of internet and the social media, a single blog post, tweet or status update can go a long way in educating the target audience. The social media has proven over time to be capable of influencing political and other important decisions. Moreover, this same internet have been used by enemies of Islam hiding under the guise of anonymity to misinform people about Islam. It will only be logical to use the same turf to elucidate what Islam really means.

It is pertinent to know that writing and informing people about Islam does not only target non-Muslims, Muslims and Muslimahs are also quite important target audience. The dearth of knowledge and/or laziness of the Ummah has greatly made many Muslims to be misguided. This unfortunate misguidance makes many to create innovations in the deen, thus, bid’ah is practised. The consequence of this is that even many innocent Muslims and would-be Muslims see these practices as being ordained by Allah and his Prophet.

Engaging in Islamic discussions geared at propagating pristine Islam requires each adherent to have a sound knowledge of the deen. Questions will be asked, both innocent and inciting ones. It is the knowledge that is reposited in the Islamic preacher that makes way for him in such situations. As Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said ‘Searching for knowledge is compulsory on all Muslims and Muslimah’. Seeking Knowledge in order to propagate Islam is a vital aspect of a healthy eeman.

Finally, even though Allah will protect His religion from mischievous acts, we should remember that He is also going to question us on the Day of Recompense how we used what He gave us (time, intellect inclusive). So, instead of waiting for your Imam to preach on the mimbar during Jumu’ah, you should realise that you also can do more to preach Islam to where your Imam’s voice cannot reach.

            ________________________________

This post was written by me more than a year ago for an Islamic magazine but it went unpublished. Came across it minutes ago, lying in my Evernote.

Peep how this lady responded when asked why Muslims do not condemn terrorism. 

Image credit: equranforyou.com

The Pilgrim at the Airport 

Her complexion & her disposition weren’t like the rest. She seemed different. She didn’t have the air others had- no family members accompanied her- or maybe I didn’t look hard enough.

Dad didn’t want me to be in the team, but he got convinced otherwise. It was November, 2008 and time for the pilgrimage to Mecca. After hours of waiting idly, it became apparent that prospective pilgrims weren’t getting airlifted that day. Or the next.

It was getting dark and the thought of where to pass the night crept in. Certainly not on the curbs of MMIA. Hotels were out of it because Hujaj- as pilgrims are called in Islam- are enjoined to stay together. Eventually, the airport mosque,  about 70 metres from the terminal, turned to our sanctuary for the next few days. That’s where I met her! 

Just about 5 metres from us, she lounged. She must have been in her 3rd trimester. With hundreds of Hujaj cohabiting, waiting for the announcement, it was easy to get apprehensive and bored- even for well wishers who came to see them off. I would stroll near the airport terminal to watch planes take off and land and sometimes, read the book, Hajj Mabrur to fend off the ennui. That was when she asked if she could read that book whenever I was done!

My life had mainly been triangular, but had been linear for the previous few months. I saw the same faces and had the same good discussions everyday. What I lacked in physical activities, I made up for in mental exuberance. Giving her that book sparked up a conversation. Having just finished secondary school, it wasn’t everytime that I met new people. I guess being a twin endeared me to her. She would rather call me Taiwo- only Mum calls me that! 

There was a feeling of trust. Maybe it was from the concept of tabula rasa– the immunity that being a stranger confers. There are only a few who’ve had such effect on me. I felt comfortable discussing with her. Felt like I could divulge some of my thoughts about anything to her- empty my mind in her front.

Then on that afternoon on Thursday, about 5 days after living in MMIA, the aircraft was ready to leave for Saudi Arabia, with the Hujajs onboard. The chaos- for me, ambivalence- that followed the announcement can only be imagined. Hundreds of pilgrims and an ocean of well wishers besieged the terminal, with a corresponding number of luggage. In the midst of this, she saw me and bade me farewell. 

‘Take care of yourself, Taiwo!’

The next few hours, while waiting to be driven home, can be summarised in one word- saudade.

Her name was ‘Tanwa.

Image: source

His Name is Omran Daqneesh.

​Even though he was surrounded by the bright orange colour, it was a heart-wrenching sight. He should never have been in the vehicle. He didn’t utter a word,  not even a whimper. He looked on, dazed. Those eyes tell a story of despair, of helplessness, of hopelessness, of trauma, of war.  When he looked down, like one shy, I lost it- tears streamed down my face. Legs outstretched, in the midst of the chaos around him, he touched his dusty bloodied face. No, it wasn’t because of an accident in school or during a visit to the mall. Minutes earlier, his home had come under a military airstrike.

What did he do to deserve this?

His name is Omran Daqneesh, a 5 year old boy in Aleppo, Syria. While his mates in other parts of the world wake up to the caring touch and sonorous voice of their parents, urging them to prepare for school, Omran wakes up to the horror of blood, rubbles, gunfire, ear-piercing noise, death. While his mates openly play on the park and complain about the taste of the berry, Omran plays in the midst of rubbles, with the sound of gunfire in the background. His innocence, blemished. No, he did not choose this life. He just found himself thrust into it.
But Omran is lucky. There are several thousands of children, his age or even lower, whose lives have been tragically cut short in the Syrian War. Sadly, Omran won’t be the last victim of this war. His 10 year old elder brother died from injuries sustained in the airstrike. Watching Omran sitting helpless in the ambulance, I genuinely wished I could hug and assure him everything would be alright.
Lonely and war-weary in the back of an ambulance, Omran stares helplessly at the world and the world stares back, leaving his at the mercy of the next airstrike.
See the video of his rescue here

Ooni, His Heavenly Father & Other Issues

Few nights ago, Twitter was agog with tweets about the Ooni. The Ooni had come under the radar after a video of him proclaiming Jesus Christ as his father had surfaced online. While some supported this, many others condemned it. I was indifferent until some tweets started springing up. These tweets caught my attention and pricked me. Twitter, being a conglomeration of people with different background, undermining, intentionally or not, of the king and/or the institution he represents was bound to happen.

His coronation about a year ago was greeted with much enthusiasm because as a modern and wealthy young man, he was more positioned to open to development, the sleepy, ancient town of Ile-Ife. His effort in unifying the Yoruba monarchs is immensely applauded. In an interview of his I watched, he claimed to have opened up hitherto sacred sites in Ile Ife for tourism. This will further open up the town to visits.

His travels around the world have raised concerns though. The monarch has visited quite a number of people including Atiku Abubakar and the Jagaban, Bola Tinubu; both of whom are politicians. However, his visit to footballer, Obafemi Martins seemed odd though. It raised a number of eyebrows. In the aforementioned interview, he admitted to be quite restless and a traveller when he was a private citizen, thus, giving the explanation for his bouts of travels.

PRESIDENT BUHARI RECEIVES OONI OF IFE

Columbus who?

In primary school Social Studies, we were taught of the 3 major religions in Nigeria; Islam, Christianity and the Traditional religion. These 3 religions are mutually exclusive except for the former two, whose doctrines are slightly similar. The traditional religion is a collective term for the beliefs in the various orishas that abound. It is common place for monarchs to be custodian of the traditional beliefs. Chief among these custodians is the Oonirisha. History has it that the office started out as that of the Chief Priest; the custodian of all deities in Ile Ife. That seems to have sealed the faith and fate of any Ooni. Over time, the adherents of the traditional beliefs have been seen by the adherents of the other two as been diabolical and evil. No thanks to their dogmas. Heck! Aregbesola came under attack for declaring public holidays for the celebration of traditional festivals.

This got me wondering if the traditional religion is going extinct. This seeming defunctness also has a domino effect on culture. That’s where my fears really lie. For instance, a major cultural identity, language appears to be losing its relevance. Parents no longer communicate in their dialects with their children, thus, raising progenies with little or no cultural identities. Many wouldn’t be caught dead conversing in Yoruba in public, they’d rather speak pidgin. I’ve even had yearn to learn Mandarin and French because, according to them, they are economically viable. How myopic! There is a workshop that holds regularly in the US and Canada about African Linguistics. Yet, isn’t it ironic that the workshop hasn’t held in Africa before? Interestingly, the last one had less than 5 linguists from Africa in attendance. Talk about a prophet not being respected in his homeland! I won’t be surprised, however if, in a few decades, the Europeans and Americans are the Yoruba teachers in our schools. In fact, the celebration of Yemoja festival is already a mainstream in the Caribbean. While we hail them and brag about how advanced our culture is, we denigrate its aficionados at home. It has begun! People are rated highly because of their foreign affiliations. That’s how I view this. The subject is rated that high because of western validation; neocolonialism of the mind?

Finally, the Ooni can keep hailing his heavenly father but it really is a sign of the present state of our culture.

PS- Erhime, I’ve not forgotten my promise o! It’s coming up next 🙂

I Will Commit Suicide!

@abc tweets ‘Life sucks. Is it even worth living? The dead ain’t got to worry about shit’

@zyx responds ‘Lol. Is that a song lyrics?’

@ghi retweeets and adds ‘You this girl aff come again. Lol’

But an ostensibly lively ‘abc‘ is actually sending an SOS message. Her friends and colleagues see her everyday with a smile planted on her face. Ask them of her & they’ll tell you she’s chatty. Yet, this beautiful, athletic lady is actually suicidal.

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You beautiful noose!

That’s what depression does.
It can be easily masked with a cheerful face. One can be the life of the party but in solitude, cut a sad figure. Some nights ago, a tweep tweeted some disturbing thoughts; while some were worried, some believed the lady was being dramatic. Who would blame the Doubting Thomases though? On Twitter, hoaxes have been shared. Nevertheless, people rose to find out what @LJ_mymusic was on about. I remember, vividly, how a lady shared the same worrying tweets years ago and ended up taking her life. In our society, problems like depression receive minimal attention. Heck! Some even see misfortune as a race.

‘See ehn! Your own trouble is even small sef. Me that I lost both of m…’

I’ve had several bouts of depression and its attendant mood swings. I still do. The most recent was on February 13, 2016- after the lively get together held at the Botanical Garden, all was vain again as soon as I reached home.  Even though, it hasn’t reached the suicidal phase, it came close in the later months of 2013. I was always sleeping. My parents suggested I saw a doctor for my sleep patterns. The subsequent one year really helped in relieving the pain. A major contributor to that is my O@TT. We had a great work relationship. I’ll forever relish my time there.

Even those with riches and fame and are believed to have it all have fallen to this monster. I watched a documentary on Basketmouth and he confessed to taking pills to deal with depression. Christian Bale, Halle Berry & Alicia Keys have had their shares. Depression no dey look face o!

Sometimes, I just feel like talking to a stranger- one who won’t judge; who I’ll talk to, without holding back. Repressed feelings are stacked up in my mind and they’re looking for escape routes. Maybe I’m conservative, but I still believe in the ‘problem shared=problem halved’ saying.
Cautiously though.

Image credit: Google Images.

Hakeem.

Social Media: Promises & Pains.

The 2015 elections have come and gone. But events that happened during the campaigns still make me think of how far we’ve gone. An aspect of the campaign that was rampantly used was the massive use of the social media. This is the first time that the virtual world would have a great influence on our electoral process. Even politicians that do not know anything about the internet created social media profiles.

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And why not?

With a sizeable number of the population classified as youths and a large percentage of such found on the internet, it was only logical to take the campaigns to their doorsteps, literally. For a few years now, the social media have influenced politics in the world (side eye to the Arab Spring). Here at home, the #OccupyNigeria protests can be referenced. The social media has also been used for meritorious and charitable causes. Funds have been generated via Twitter for those with medical and social needs.
With all these promises come side effects. During the electoral processes, the heavy use of the social media gave way for the use of propaganda. While propaganda isn’t a bad concept on its own, the use of same for misinformation evokes anger in me. Because of the wide reach of the internet, a tweet made in the corner of my mosquito-infested room in Iresa-Adu village in Oyo state can influence the thought process and decision of someone in her mansion in Eket, Akwa Ibom. Such is the power of the social media. This is in sharp contrast with the propaganda peddled at newspaper joints. That one is localized.
Then, there are the overlords. This is quite common on Twitter. These are tweeps with demagogic tendencies. During the 2015 electoral processes, they had minions who nod in approval to whatever they tweet.

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et tu, Nasir?

Their influence might be derived from their follower count (which runs into several thousands), number of tweets (usually into tens/hundreds of thousands), sense of humour et al. These are the ones that the politicians use in achieving their aims. Their ability to create trending topics make them useful tools for politicians.

Another source of misinformation today is because of the proliferation of blogs. Anyone, sane or not, with internet access is able to open a blog and fuelled by the quest for AdSense money, traffic must be generated at any cost, even on a platter of integrity. Thus, outrageous news items are formulated. My ‘homemade’ antidote to this is to before reading a news item check the source- a funny name & it’s off my reading list. The politicians now use the social media to control the narratives, so as to condition the mind of the people towards a direction. Thus, claims and rebuttals are norms here. It’s now difficult to trust the news I read online now. Or maybe my standards are high- justifiably so. If you’re in the business of informing people, you hold the power to shape their mindset.

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1- Armoured tank?? 2- Must be another Lagos.

Oh heck! You can create a mass hysteria. Thus, if I’m going to give you that power, it has to be deserved.

Looking for credible news in the myriad of blogs now seems like “looking for a needle in a haystack”. How do you find it?- Bring a damn magnet!

Social Media Bill?

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Problem is... @SegunObasanjo is a parody account.

Hakeem.

#TheHakeem

The time is 10:54pm; the day is October 27, 2015. Just a few hours before I add another year. Lying down here in my room, memories rush through my mind. One leading to the other like a chain. Inexhaustible memories. Nostalgia setting in. While some evoke smiles, others bring sighs. I’m just here trying to reconstruct my life since when I could differentiate my right from my left. Apparently, not all will be captured- some will be left out of the frame while some are conspicuously staring at you. Have you ever passed through a path, perceived a smell, seen a logo or listened to a song & feel nostalgic? Remember your time in some places/situations and/or your actions and you think to yourself ‘Was It Really Me In There? Was I Really That Stupid?’ . Where do I even start from? No other place than my years spent in Osogbo.
Even though I spent my first 10 years in Osogbo, events there still remain evergreen. I can still feel the chirps of the birds in the nearby bush, the distant noise of the grinding machine & the texture of the entrance door. Can such simple life be replicated? Life there was triangular- school, Ile Kewu, home. Even though I left Omolewa Nursery & Primary School in primary 4 when I was 10 years old, I still remember the faces of school mates- Kunle Odeleye, Seun Oyelami, Godwin Akpan, Bisi Akande, Yusuf Sodiq, Wunmi Amusa, Dare, Monisola. I remember how I used to cart away the first position prize every term. And I would wear my oversized brown coat, with my black shoe. I remember my first crush- her name was Islamiyyat. A very beautiful girl. Cynosure of all eyes. Her mother sold cosmetic products. Friends were always jealous because she was Hakeemat’s friend which made me kinda close to her. Dad was working in Lagos and came home during weekends. Weekends were always looked forward to. How I was usually punished almost everyday because of football. Playing football on sawdust then was bliss. An incident that keeps coming to my mind was when my N70 was stolen. Money I had saved for weeks meant for turning up during Ileya. I had a small blue purse I had bought from Sodiq. Both purse and money were stolen …*sniffs*. I still haven’t forgiven the thief.
Aged 8, I experienced my first and only funeral prayer, Janazah. Grandma died on August 5, Faizat’s 2nd birthday. With fondness, I recall going on ruku’u after the 2nd takbeer. On that day, armed robbers invaded our house in Osogbo but we were away in Ode-Omu. Unfortunately, they met my cousin at home. The blood spatter was on the wall for years.
Then came September, 2001. It was time to move to Lagos. Lagos was like heaven. The journey itself is an unforgettable experience. The longest distance I had travelled was Ogbomosho to Osogbo. Getting to Lagos on a Sunday night, there wasn’t much time to rest before resuming at a new school the following day. A new environment, a new state, a new school, a new lifestyle. Heck! I’ll now be entering school bus. This is a fucking first. Firstly, I want used to wearing socks; now I have to wear them everyday. Secondly, I wasn’t used to speaking English in school. Even though, Omolewa was a private school, our language of choice was Yoruba. Now in Pelade, no one would converse in Yoruba. That was a rude awakening. It wasn’t as if I couldn’t speak English or I didn’t know my tenses, but coming from an environment where Yoruba was spoken 80% of the time to where Yoruba wasn’t welcome. Arggh!!
January 27th, 2002- I was at Ile Kewu when The Explosions started. The memory is still crystal clear. Was it the end time? An uncommon coup d’etat? Invasion of Lagos? No one knew the answers. We all just kept going nowhere.
There are some memories we gladly share while there are some we ain’t glad of- like that year in Osogbo wh…

Hey! Look at a unicorn!

Secondary school will be the most memorable though- for obvious reasons. That’s where we are moulded and where the teenage life is spent. The pranks, the exam formations, the beatings- yup! I was a friend of Mr Bello’s cane because, Maths assignment, the hymns. I remember how Udensi used to compete with me in CRS exams because a Muslim shouldn’t get more than him in the subject. While some secondary schools claim to have more fun than the others, fun is relative & subjective. Memories from secondary schools are encyclopedic. They come in trickles. Each with an accompanying giggle.
Now, as I go to sleep, I’ve learnt that some strangers become friends and return to being strangers; some strangers become friends and remain friends while some strangers become friends and thereafter become family. I see me as a museum. Each scar and wrinkle, an artifact telling its story. And I, the curator.

And the evolution continues!

Hakeem.

Of Forensics & Fighting Boko Haram.

The Boko Haram insurgency in the North eastern part of the country can be described as a crime against humanity because the sect’s activities carry the features of such and also carry genocidal tendencies. The sect’s ideology which is to establish an Islamic caliphate is such that all opposition to it is met with brutal violence. The sect’s mode of achieving this has been assassinations, bombings, systematic wiping out of people of other beliefs and recruitment of child soldiers.

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In the light of this, forensic science can be of great significance in stopping this sect. Forensic science, which is a multidisciplinary field involving chemistry, psychology, archaeology, accounting, is a field that thrives on facts and evidences in order to prosecute offenders. For this deadly sect to be stopped, principles of forensic science must be employed.
A major aspect of forensic science that must be employed is forensic archaeology. This is because forensic archaeologists are trained experienced in using archaeology principles to solve crimes. The add value to forensics because of their techniques in discovering crime scenes and the systematic method of recovering evidence. Boko Haram sometimes bury the victims of their menace in mass graves. Forensic archaeology will come into play when recovering the remains from the graves and also the evidences buried in the grave– like bullet casings. Forensic archaeologists have been involved in this in countries like Rwanda and Yugoslavia where mass graves were located.
Another area where forensic science will help in solving this sect’s menace is the use of forensic anthropology. Forensic anthropology deals with identifying the victims as well as their manners of death. This information will be significant in prosecuting the perpetuators in the court of law because the crimes and the victims will thus not be treated in abstract.
Another field of forensic science that will be significant is forensic chemistry. This subfield is important because it usually links the perpetuator to the crime scene through evidences that will be analysed in the laboratory. Because of the sect’s use of guns and explosives, the study of such will be done though the ballistic analysis. Ballistic analysis, which is a subfield of forensic chemistry, will seek to know the types and properties of explosives the sect uses. Therefore, the origin of such explosives can be traced.
Furthermore, the sect has been discovered to use controlled substances like cocaine and heroin. Forensic chemistry can also be used to determine the origin and properties of the drugs. The result of this can thereafter be used in sentencing the sect’s members.
Terror activities are usually capital intensive because weapons have to be purchased and for other logistical activities. Thus, forensic accounting is significant in fighting insurgency. Because the financial activities of terrorist groups are usually are usually discrete (discreet), it is usually difficult to unravel their source of funding. However, with forensic accounting, the source of their finance and channelling routes can be exposed. In doing this, seemingly innocent organisations can be linked to terrorist activities. This aspect of forensics is usually employed by intelligence agencies such as the CIA to fight terrorists groups like Al-Qaeda.
The use of forensic botany can also be used in fighting the insurgency. This is effective in the events of mass graves. Forensic botany will be able to determine whether the location of the mass grave is the primary crime scene or the secondary crime scene. This will be done by analysing the plant materials such as pollen grains (which are almost indestructible) and other plant materials. Forensic botany, through the analysis of pollen grains found on the victims will also determine the season of death. The results of these analyses can then be compared with the timeline of the sect’s activities in order to have an effective sentencing in the court of law.
In addition, forensic psychology will be very significant in fighting the insurgency. Forensic psychology will seek to examine and analyse the motive and state of mind of the perpetuators. With this, a sequence can be formed and thus, helping to prevent further attacks. Forensic psychology will also be important in ‘de-brainwashing’ the child soldiers that have been recruited by the sect and also in rehabilitating the victims of the sect’s activities.
In conclusion, it can be determined from the above points that forensic science investigation is very important in fighting ‘Boko Haram’ insurgency. The evidences that will arise from forensic science investigations will be highly valuable in convicting the perpetuators of crimes against humanity.

NB: This was an exam question and I felt I should reproduce my answer here, verbatim. What would you score me?
Also, ballistics analysis doesn’t include explosives.

Photo credit: http://www.stpeterslist.cm

Hakeem.