The assertion by the Chief of Army Staff, Major-General Tukur Buratai to make Boko Haram insurgents beg for mercy may have come true so soon as the dreaded terrorists are said to have started making contacts with the Centre for Crisis Communication, CCC, to initiate a dialogue process with the federal government on their behalf.
This is also coming on the heels of President Muhammadu Buhari’s vow that Boko Haram insurgency will be terminated by the end of this year and his recent statement during a visit to the United States that he is open to dialogue from genuine members of the group.
It was gathered on Tuesday that the Sect members have made several calls to the Centre claiming that hundreds of their members who were worn out and hold contrary view to the destructive and murderous activities of the terrorist organization were willing to lay down their arms for amnesty.
The Executive Secretary of the Centre for Crisis Communication, Air Commodore Yusuf Anas (rtd), who made this disclosure today in Abuja, said, “The efforts by some members of the group to get across to the Centre and the discussions we have had, have been encouraging. We have taken measures also to ascertain the genuineness or otherwise of these persons. We believe they are ready for genuine dialogue. However, discussions are still ongoing and nothing concrete has been arrived at, but it is an opportunity to interact with what I call insiders in the Boko Haram group”.
Commodore Anas stated this while speaking on sundry national issues including terrorism, cattle rustling, National Assembly crisis, pipeline vandalism, kidnapping, armed robbery, Radio Biafra, asserting that his team is already in the process of facilitating a meeting with relevant government agencies regarding the overtures of the terrorists.
According to him, “The Boko Haram challenges have continued to become an intractable crisis situation to our nation. Recently, Governor Kashim Shetima of Borno Stated that ‘more than 3million innocent Nigerians from Borno, Yobe, Adamawa and other parts of Nigeria live in deep agony, having lost their sons, daughters, fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters, relations and neighbours after being brutally attacked by members of the Boko Haram”.
“Some prominent Nigerians have in recent times canvassed the idea of dialogue with the Boko Haram. The option of dialogue according to them, at the moment provides a leeway of not only safely rescuing the abducted Chibok School Girls alive but also possibly bringing to an end, the orgy of violence unleashed on innocent Nigerians by the group”.
“Considering the unspeakable atrocities which the group has visited on Nigeria and Nigerians, this option is no doubt a hard sell. However, the recent statement of President Muhammadu Buhari on government’s readiness to negotiate with credible members of the sect has rekindled hope for dialogue”.
The Centre noted that the development is a good one because it has opened a window of opportunity for dialogue for the insurgents that are willing and ready to lay down their arms. It added that, “This position is predicated on calls made to the Centre by some members of the Boko Haram requesting for genuine and comprehensive dialogue that could lead to hundreds of them coming out to renounce their membership”.
Consequent upon this, Commodore Anas said, “From discussions held so far, the members seem to be speaking on behalf of a cross section of the group. They expressed willingness to come forward to make certain proposals on behalf of other members of the group. If we pursue this line, I believe something positive will come out”.
“The Centre however suggests that such dialogue should be done with every sense of caution and responsibility bearing in mind the previous disappointments that attended attempts at negotiations,” he stated.
Source: Daily Post