Boko Haram: Journey from Evil is a 60-minute documentary revealing the terrorist group’s history and brutality, framed against inspiring profiles of four courageous Nigerian women working to fight the terrorists and heal their country. This award-winning documentary is extraordinary for several reasons. First, it uses video of Boko Haram camps and activities, shot by the terrorists themselves. This video was exclusively obtained by VOA and meticulously vetted to ensure its authenticity. Then, VOA’s journalists traveled to the heart of Boko Haram in Northern Nigeria to record the impact of the terrorist campaign on local communities, and to find those taking great risks to help combat them and restore hope. The four women profiled are an organizer of the Bring Back Our (Chibok) Girls group, a photographer with positive images from the town of Maiduguri, a psychiatrist working to rehabilitate Boko Haram fighters, and a Sambisa Forest hunter who is tracking the terrorists.
The documentary premiered at Washington’s U.S. Institute of Peace and at London’s Chatham House before public screenings in 13 cities in Nigeria and Niger and broadcasts on more than 40 TV affiliates in English, Hausa, and French across the Lake Chad Basin. Nigeria’s most-populous Muslim state, Kano, is showing the film in more than 900 public schools as part of a campaign to counter violent extremism. VOA’s sister network, MBN, also translated the film into Arabic. “VOA has woken us, the media, from our slumber and to our responsibility in enlightening the public on these dangerous trends,” says Nigerian Union of Journalists vice president Wilson Bako.
Project Team: Beth Mendelson, VOA Senior Executive Producer, Tom Detzel, VOA Investigative Editor, and VOA Hausa Service and Africa Division Staff