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Borno governor defends surrendered terrorists, says not all of them are criminals

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BORNO State Governor Babagana Zulum has defended some of the surrendered deadly Boko Haram terrorists, saying that not all of them are criminals.

Zulum, whose state has paid a costly price for more than a decade for the activities of the insurgents, told government house correspondents that some of the surrendered insurgents genuinely repented.

He noted that about 2,600 of the insurgents who surrendered were women and young children forced to join the group and trained to wield AK-47 rifles.

The governor, whose convoy was attacked by the insurgents several times last year, explained that no law prescribed the killing of surrendered insurgents.

He added that insurgents would be trained for reintegration, assuring that their victims would be taken care of and not be left behind.

Boko Haram and Islamic State’s West Africa Province (ISWAP) are responsible for the death of more than 53,000 people and has displaced nearly 2.4 million people in the Lake Chad Basin.

The Federal Government recently said calls by Nigerians to prosecute surrendered Boko Haram terrorists were against global practices.

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Already, there are calls by a controversial Muslim group that the surrendered insurgents should be accepted into the society and be treated like newly-found brothers.

The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) wants the authorities to do everything possible to resettle and reintegrate the insurgents surrendering back into society.

MURIC Director Ishaq Akintola appealed that the insurgents, who had terrorised Borno State for more than a decade, be trained in vocations that would enable them to cater for themselves and their families in future.

Vincent Ufuoma is a reporter with The ICIR. He is a lover of God, truth, knowledge and justice.

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