Maiduguri, Nigeria: the challenge and the grace


Maiduguri is the town where the jihadist sect Boko Haram originated and started the war of terror that from 2009 up until today overwhelmed Nigeria and the basin of Lake Chad. This reportage aims to portrait the places of everyday life in a place where, however, tragedy can suddenly break in the ordinary: an attack, a kidnapping in a school or a suicide bombing among market stalls.

Maiduguri is the town where the jihadist sect Boko Haram originated and started the war of terror that from 2009 up until today overwhelmed Nigeria and the basin of Lake Chad.
In ten years, the Islamic insurrection caused 35.000 deaths and 2 million refugees; Maiduguri, the second most populated town in Nigeria and capital city of Borno State, that originally means “The home of peace”, is the place where the violence and the tragedies imposed by the Salafist group are more visible. Maiduguri is the forbidden capital city of Africa’s caliphate, and it’s a town which is literally under siege and that offers shelter to more than 300.000 internal refugees. The United Nations’ Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, OCHA, estimates a number that ranges from 450.000 and 1.2 million of people without access to basic healthcare.
This reportage aims to portrait the places of everyday life in a place where, however, tragedy can suddenly break in the ordinary: an attack, a kidnapping in a school or a suicide bombing among market stalls.

Le Courrier International, November 2021