- Governor Zulum of Borno state has commented on the recent massive surrendering of some Boko Haram terrorists
- The Borno state governor said the situation is difficult as the state government and the people of Borno are now in a dilemma
- Zulum said he will consult with President Buhari, service chiefs, traditional leaders and victims of the terrorists to know the way forward
Bama and Gwoza LGAs, Borno state - Babagana Zulum, the governor of Borno state, has said the ongoing surrender of Boko Haram terrorists has left the northeasten state with two extremely difficult situations.
In a statement posted on the governor's official Facebook page, he said Borno state is in a ‘catch-22 situation' over the unfolding development.
Legit.ng gathers that Governor Zulum said this on Saturday, August 14, in Bama and Gwoza local government areas when he addressed military officers and community leaders.
The governor said:
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"We (in Borno) are in a very difficult situation over the ongoing surrender by insurgents. We have to critically look between two extreme conditions and decide our future.
"We have to choose between an endless war or to cautiously accept the surrendered terrorists which is really painful and difficult for anyone that has lost loved ones, difficult for all of us and even for the military whose colleagues have died and for volunteers.
"No one would find it easy to accept killers of his or her parents, children and other loved ones."
Governor Zulum said accepting Boko Haram has the risk of seriously offending the feelings of victims with the potential of civil rebellion.
He, however, added that there is also the risk that if the terrorists willing to surrender are rejected, they can join ISWAP to swell the ranks of fighters in the bush and the path of peace becomes narrowed.
Consultations with President Buhari, others
Governor Zulum explained that he will engage in high-level consultations with President Muhammadu Buhari and service chiefs over the development.
Others the governor said he would consult with include resident security heads, traditional rulers, elders and religious leaders, and other stakeholders.
He said the goal of the consultation is to critically review the situation and come up with a framework on how to move forward.
Ibrahim Mallam Ibrahim said:
"What you said is right! These insurgents can't be left alone to be wandering in the midst of the ordinary innocent citizens, because they can easily infiltrate them.
"Rather should be kept in remind homes where their psyche, emotions and other behavioural tendencies should be checkmated for at least three to four years from now!
"So that, they can completely be reformed and be good citizens, so as to mingle up with other citizens as well."
Abba Muhammad Umar said:
"What a dilemma! However, to bring or narrow the war to attainable peace is far outweighing of continuous bloodletting!
"The way forward is critically essential in this quagmire.May Allah (SWT) chose the best for us, Ameen."
Mohammed Mamman Yetchami said:
"Let the government rehabilitate them for few yrs before joining the community with d acceptance of d communities leaders."
Zahraddin Umar said:
"Indeed this is a very difficult situation, may Allah bring a solution."
We may not accept repentant insurgents into our communities
Meanwhile, traditional and religious leaders in Borno have said it would be difficult to reintegrate repentant Boko Haram members into their communities.
The leaders expressed fear over the de-radicalisation of repentant members of Boko Haram by the Nigerian Army under its Safe Corridor programme.
Legit.ng gathered that Shehu of Borno, Abubakar El-Kanemi, said the idea is a welcomed one, but that the people would continue to be haunted by the horrors of the 12-year insurgency, especially residents of communities where the repentant insurgents are to be incorporated.
Senator Ndume tells Nigerian Army not to pamper repentant terrorist
Similarly, Legit.ng had previously reported that the chairman of the Senate Committee on the Nigerian Army, Senator Ali Ndume, said the repentant Boko Haram insurgents should not be pampered.
Ndume said the former insurgents should be carefully profiled and not just given what he termed blanket amnesty and pampering.
The Borno federal lawmaker said instead of being in a hurry to resettle, reintegrate and rehabilitate the surrendered criminals, the military should hasten to end the reign of insurgency in Nigeria.