The Nigerian Army says it is committed to restoring total peace to Nigeria’s north-east region ravaged by Boko Haram fighters.
This is according to the Coordinator of Operation Safe Corridor, Major General Bamidele Shafa, on Friday who insisted that the military has recorded steady progress in the war against insurgency, although the fight seemed to have lingered.
He revealed that over a thousand of Boko Haram fighters have willingly laid down their arms and embraced the amnesty programme of the Federal Government.
Shafa’s remarks came shortly after hundreds of repentant insurgents numbering 586 were brought to the Gombe International Airport, the largest since the operation started in 2015.
The former Boko Haram fighters were later taken to the Operations Safe Corridor camp in the Malam Sidi area of the state.
At the camp, the repentant insurgents are to undergo de-radicalisation and re-orientation processes, as well as various vocational training and psycho-social support programmes before being re-integration into the society.
Some of the former Boko Haram members, Musa Ibrahim and Alkali Kukawa, told Channels Television why and how they found themselves in the group.
Ibrahim narrated that some terrorists invaded his village and threatened to kill his parents should he refuse to join them.
“That how I joined but after spending years with them, we notice serious divisions among the leaders which kept us wondering if this is of God and finally when we got a window, we surrendered to the Nigerian military,” he explained.
On his part, Kukawa who disclosed that he was captured with his son said he never participated in any terrorist attack and has been praying to be reunited with his family.
He said, “They conquered our village and forced us away.
“Since they took us away, I have been praying for deliverance and finally it came when we got the window of escape, I and my son trekked for 11 days before we could board a car that brought us to Yobe State where we surrendered to the security forces.”