BREAKING NEWS: Jonathan Ready To Grant Amnesty To Boko Haram Members
Information coming out from the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, Abuja, suggests that the Federal Government has indicated its willingness to grant amnesty for the Boko Haram insurgents.
This piece of information was made public on Thursday, 29 May, 2014, by the Minister of Youth Development, Mr. Boni Haruna, while speaking at a programme to mark the nation’s Democracy Day titled ‘A day with young leaders of Nigeria’.
According to the minister, President Goodluck Jonathan has given approval for the members of the Boko Haram sect to be given amnesty as soon as the terrorists lay down their arms.
* President Jonathan, right, and Chief of Defence Staff, Badeh
The Nation reports that Mr Haruna also added that series of programmes are in the pipeline for members of the sect as soon as they embrace the federal government’s gesture.
“President Goodluck Jonathan has also declared amnesty for members of the Boko Haram sect. Series of integration programmes have been lined up for the members of the sect who would surrender their arms and embrace peace.”
“Let me use this opportunity on behalf of the Federal Government, to call on the members of the Boko Haram sect to embrace the government’s gesture and key into the amnesty programme,” the minister was quoted to have stated.
* File photo of Boko Haram attack in Abuja
While commenting on the youth restiveness in the Niger Delta, Mr Haruna opined that the government introduced a development programme which gave the youth an opportunity to have a meaningful life.
He stated that over 30,000 youths have benefited from the amnesty programme which he recalled was a result of a bitter national security experience.
The minister noted that the effect of the amnesty is that beneficiaries have transformed from militants to wealth creators, employers of labour and skilled citizens.
Some of the dignitaries that attended the event included the former Head of the Interim National Government, Chief Ernest Shonekan, former Vice President, Chief Alex Ekwueme, and former Chief of General Staff, Oladipo Diya.
*Abducted schoolgirls in Chibok
No fewer than 276 schoolchildren kidnapped by the Boko Haram sect at the Government Girls Secondary School in Chibok, Borno State on 14 April, 2014 are yet to regain their freedom.
The terror group said it would not release the girls unless the federal government is ready to swap with some of their members captured by the Nigerian military.
Before this latest development, the President Jonathan led FG had said it is not ready to negotiate with the terrorists over the abducted girls.
Nigerians and other concerned people would hope this latest move would lead to safe release of the schoolgirls.