Borno State Governor, Babagana Zulum has claimed that repentant members of terror group Boko Haram, gather intelligence from the community and return to terror.
Recall the military in 2016 created an initiative tagged Operation Safe Corridor to rehabilitate and reintegrate repentant members of the terror group. More than 500 ex-Boko Haram fighters have joined the programme,
Pointing to the rehabilitation programme, some government officials and voices are controversially calling for a similar initiative for the recent terrorists herders responsible for kidnappings and other insurgency.
They claim that a rehabilitation programme for the terrorist herders is the best way to restore normalcy.
Speaking on this discourse at the Noth-Est Governor’s Forum meeting in Bauchi on Thursday, Zulum whose state has been the worse victim of the Boko Haram terror acts faulted the initiative and called for a review.
“Another aspect of the war against the insurgency that needs to be urgently reviewed or modified, is the issue of deradicalisation of Boko Haram terrorists, who have been captured or have willingly surrendered themselves to the authorities,” he said.
“It has been confirmed that the concept of deradicalisation or Safe Corridor is not working as expected. Quite often, those who have passed through the Safe Corridor initiative, or have been deradicalised, usually go back and rejoin the terror group after carefully studying the various security arrangements in their host communities, during the reintegration process.
“In addition, the host communities where the reintegration process is going on usually resent the presence of Boko Haram terrorists, even if they have been deradicalised, because of the despicable and atrocious activities they have committed in the past.
“So the idea of deradicalisation, as currently being implemented, needs to be reviewed because the main goals and the underlying objectives behind the initiative are not being achieved.”
The governor further the best mean to restore normalcy is for the terrorists to be prosecuted as terrorist Act dictates.
“On the prosecution of terrorists, we must make efforts to avoid the current encumbrances and intricacies associated with the process, which usually takes considerable time, by urging the appropriate federal authorities to devolve the powers of the minister of justice and attorney-general of the federation to state attorneys-general in order to facilitate the prosecution process,” he said.