Over 35,000 terrorists who belong to the Boko Haram and ISWAP terrorist groups have willingly laid down their weapons and surrendered to the government in Borno State.
This disclosure was made on Monday by the Borno State Governor, Professor Babagana Zulum who noted that some of the commanders of the terrorists are part of those who surrendered.
He said in a statement by his Senior Adviser on Communications and Strategy, Mallam Isa Gusau which contained the Governor’s Easter message to the people of the state that the development is an answer to prayers.
He commended the security forces, residents of Borno State, and the government at all levels for the sacrifices and commitment to making the feat achievable which he said has moved the state closer to ending the insurgency.
He urged Christians to continue to embrace and display the lessons of sacrifice, forgiveness, and being able to emerge stronger from challenges which the Easter season preaches.
He added that the repentant insurgents are undergoing stringent security profiling, disarmament, demobilization, and safe reintegration.
“To my understanding, some of the main reflections of the Easter festival are the importance of making sacrifices for the greater good of humanity, having the strength to forgive offenders and being able to re-emerge stronger from serious difficulties.
“In over 12 years of our battles with insurgents (Boko Haram and later ISWAP), Borno State, for the first time, has a golden window that has the potential of ending the insurgency.
“The mass surrender of over 35,000 fighters and commanders is certainly one of Allah’s many miracles towards healing Borno and the rest of the North-East.
“This mass surrender is a product of the endless prayers citizens across Borno, the North-East, the rest of Nigeria and indeed the world have been offering, seeking God’s intervention to heal Borno State.
“It is the product of immense sacrifices by the Armed Forces and volunteers. It is a product of repeated calls by political leaders, clergy, elders, and traditional rulers, asking insurgents to lay down their arms and embrace peace.
“We must, therefore, be optimistic in welcoming the likely benefits of disarming, demobilizing, rehabilitating, and reintegrating mass-surrendered insurgents,” Governor Zulum said.