Since a jihadist insurgency started in Nigeria over a decade ago, fighters caused the death of more than 40,000 people forcing 2 million to displace, according to the United Nations.
At the weekend, Nigeria’s Chief of Defence Staff disclosed that between July 2021 and May 2022 that 13,360 Boko Haram fighters surrendered to the federal government.
In total 51,828 Boko Haram fighters and their family members gave themselves up to the authorities.
Gen. Lucky Irabor disclosed it while delivering a lecture at the 7th Founders’ Day ceremony of the Edo State University.
He also touched on the “Operation Safe Corridor’ topic. The program was created as a transitional justice approach similar to the Niger Delta Amnesty programme launched by the federal government in 2009.
It involves the setting up of special facilities where repentant terrorists who surrendered their arms could be rehabilitated.”
If General Lucky Irabor mentioned over 2,000 graduates, he however listed challenges to the program among which: lack of specialised training experts and inadequate physical structure; inadequate collaboration and coordination; absence of appropriate legislation on reintegration; low agency and international participation; as well as ineffective monitoring system.
During the last presidential campaign then-candidate Bola Tinubu promised to “fighting terror, banditry, kidnapping and violent agitation”.
In his brochure entitle “Renewed Hope”, he said that when elected his administration would ” enhance recruitment of personnel, and bolster existing agencies and systems to achieve this fundamental national security goal.”
It remains to be seen whether this plan will prove effective and life-changing enough for millions of Nigerian citizens whose lives have been turned upside down.