”Granting Amnesty To The Insurgents Would Breed New Forms Of Criminality In The Country”- Ndume

’’ Granting Amnesty To The Insurgents  Would Breed New Forms Of Criminality In The Country’’ .- Ndume

By Suleiman Umaru

Ali Ndume, a Senator of Federal Republic of Nigeria, is not a happy man.  Ndume’s source of unhappiness is the speed at which The Nigerian Government at the instance of President Muhammadu Buhari a retired Army General  rush to grant  blanket amnesty to repentant Insurgents  in the north east  geopolitical region, particular, Borno,  state, when there is no sign  of the insurgency war  in the region coming to an end soon.

Appearing on Channels Television, on Sunday, August 8, 2021, an aggrieved Ndume, who is the Chairman of the Senate Committee on the Army had told Nigerians that the ‘’blanket amnesty granted to the repentant Islamic Fundamentalist Group, BokoHaram and the Islamic State of the West African Province, ISWAP,   fighters who had surrendered their guns to the Nigerian military on the ground   that they are not fighting again may not be the solution to ending  the insurgency in the north east. He fears that another form of Criminality   would emerge in region with the hope that the Katsina state born Nigerian President would’ bring them to the Negotiating table’’.

Senate: Opposed To Granting Blnket Amnesty To Repentedant Insurgents

The Borno state born politician , who could not hide his feelings had  warned  that  ‘’the government must  strive  to get  to the root of the crisis  to ascertain  that the true cause  of the insurgency in the region’’. The Senator, representing  Borno south, in the Ahmad Lawan led  Senate may have been forced to speak out his mind    when  Onyema Nwachukwu, a Brigadier General and Director, Army Public Relations officer,  disclosed on Saturday, August 8, 2021, that  more BokoHaram and ISWAP insurgents have  surrendered their  guns to embrace  the government Blanket  amnesty and are now ‘’ asking Nigerians for forgiveness’’.

Although, there  appears  to be celebration in military circles over the surrender of the BokoHaram and ISWAP  fghters, particular,  Musa Adamu, kknown in  the insurgent circles as Mala Musa Abuja, and Usman Adamu, popular,  Abu Darda .  This is because the duo, were key to the manufacture and explosion  of  Improvised Explosive Devices, IED, in the war-  thorn  states in in the north east geo-politicalregion.

The Army Pulic Relations offier had said that   Adamu, was  the Chief Bomb expert of the Late Abubakar Shekau’s  led BokoHaram Group while  Darda, was the Deputy Chief Bomber expert of the Group, meaning that the BokoHaram Group, has been weakened in their attacks with the surrendering of the duo to the Nigerian Army they have tormented over the years to continue to detonate Bombs which is their major strength.

The two Principal bomb expert of BokoHram   were said to have surrendered along with 335 of their followers, involved in detonating Bombs, 746 adult women and children and one of the abducted Chibok girls in 2014, who had become a member of the Group. They were said to have surrendered to the troops in Bama Local Government Area of Borno state .

Brig.Gen. Eyitayo: GOC, aRMY 7, Divison, Nigerian Army, 7,DivisionI, Received Repent Insurgents in Bama Army Headquarters

  AN elated Army spokesperson had said disclosed  that  Abdulwahab Adelokum Eyitayo,  a Brigadier General and Genearal Officer Coomanding , GOC, 7 Division of the Nigerian Army in Maiduguri, the Borno state Capital and  the Commander  ,Sector 1 of Operations HADIN KAI, OPHK brigade,  were  present  at the Headquarters  of 21 Special  Armoured Brigade   in Bama to receive the repentant Insurgents  amidst tight security, within and around the Bama Army Headquarters to avoid given room to  those  who are aggrieved over the surrender of the BokoHaram Bomb experts to strike . 

Indeed, with the escalation of the insurgency in the north east states of Borno and Yobe, particular, the Nigerian Army, under the close watch of Farouk Yahaya, a Lt. General and Isiaka Oladayo Amao, an Air Marshall and Chief of  Nigerian Air Force Staff, have told those that cares to  listen  the surrender of the BokohARAM and ISWAP , fighters  would encourage them ‘’to intensify  its kinetic and non- kinetic  approach towards  the ongoing  fight against insurgency  in the north east’’. 

Recall that THAT Brig. General Nwachukwu, the Army Director of Public  Relations had said that the military would   ‘’leverage on the knowledge  of the  BokoHaram Bomb experts to achieve  both short  and long-term  counter insurgency  gains  in the region’’.  

 This may have informed  whyBrigadier Geneal Eyitayo, who was said to have received the repentant BokoHaram members, had that said ‘’they will undergo some level of rehabilitation at a government facility  before their integration  into the larger society’’. The repentant placard carrying Boko Haram and ISWAP members,  who had had condemned terrorism in its entirety enthusiasm may have been dampened  as they had  expected  to be integrated immediately  into the society to rejoin their  family members whom they have  left for long.

  Their optimism was informed  the large crowd that trooped out to welcome them when information filtered out about their  surrendering at the Bama Army Headquarters and the new clothes, food items, groceries  and toiletries ,  donated by people which  were distributed to make them feel at home.

Th Army GOC, may have used the opportunity to appeal to the surrendered Insurgents from both the Camp of BokoHaram and ISWAP, to encourage their brothers and Colleagues    still at the Sambisa Forest and the Lake Chad region respectively ,’’to come out  and embrace the new life of peace and rehabilitation’’.  He may have spoken the mind of Lt.Gen, yahaya, the Chief of Army Staff, CoAS.

Many believe that the BokoHaram and ISWAP, insurgents may have decided to drop their gun to embrace peace as they could no longer  stand the military renewed  attacks  coupled  with ‘’ the kinetic and  non-kinetic efforts  of the Operation HADIN KAI, OPHK, in the recent time’’.

Gun Throtting Insurgents Who Came Out From The Forrest And Surrendered To The Nigerian Army

Given the matching order to the military Chiefs by the Katsina state born Nigerian President to end the insurgency in the north east, may have forced  Lt. General Yahaya, COA,to give his words ‘’ to take the Battle to the insurgency enclaves in the Forest’’.  The Army General may have been encouraged to charge his officers in the OPHK and  other military Formations, visited in Borno state, recently , to do so with the delivery of six super Tucano, A -29, fighters, out of the twelve , which Godwin Emefele, the  governor of Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, had said was procured , with the assistance of the US Department of Defence from Sierra Nevada the sum of $495 million.  The insurgents, according according to security experts may have known that the game is up and there may not be any hiding place for them in the forest any longer and thus, have no option but to come out and embrace peace before it is too late. 

However, Senator Ndume, who has never hidden his opposition  against granting blanket amnesty to the insurgents by the Nigerian government is  not amused with the plans  ‘’to rehabilitate and reintegrate the repented insurgents  back into the society, insisting that it is too early.

 He noted that inn 2018,   the Nigerian military had released 1,400 repented BokHaram fighters who were rehabilitated and reintegrated into the society, and trained on Vocational skills to be able stand on their own without going about search of jobs that they may never get.

Note that instead of the insurgency war in the region fizzling out with the Army release of the  1,400, BokoHaram and ISWAP, fighters, but , it escalated as there were  more attacks on military Baracks  in orno and Yobe states, fueling speculations making the rounds that those who have who been reintegrated into the society may have become informant to their Colleagues in the Forest  still carrying  gun.  

It is not surprising why Nigerians, including the likes of Senator Ndume, fear, that the surrender of the two   the two BokoHaram and ISWAP, Bomb experts and their 335 followers would not make the difference but worsen the crisis in the region. ‘’ anyone who has lived in the Forest and tested terrorism, that blood of  being a killer would  always be with him’’,  An Iranian security expert  had said.

 This is where the government would have to thread with caution releasing these repentant Insurgents into the society without trating them as Criminals who should be tried to avoid making a mockery of the February 18, 2023, general elections.         

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