Expressing doubt about the motive behind the surrender of some members of Boko Haram, the Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) has urged the government to prosecute them or free all others currently in custody, reports the Nation newspaper.
In a statement, titled: On Repentant Boko Haram Terrorists and the Principle of Equity and Justice, by its Chairman and former Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Chief Audu Ogbe, the ACF said: “We are currently witnessing large-scale surrender of large numbers of Boko Haram insurgents, among whom are bomb makers, commanders, arsonists, rapists, and child snatchers. Do we have good reasons to cheer and hope for an end to this decade-old insanity? “
Is ‘I am sorry’ enough to bring relief to Nigerians and the thousands of the dead and the maimed? What of those victims bombed in churches, mosques, schools, and markets?
“What of all the men and women in uniform murdered by them? Who can count the thousands of widows and orphans they have created? And what is the difference between them and the (Sunday) Ighohos or ESN of Nigeria?
“So, what do we do with them? Should we just embrace them and trust them wholesale? Are their moves informed by altruistic repentance? We seriously doubt.
“We join the Governor of Borno State; the Shehu of Borno; Senator Ali Ndume and millions of Nigerians in pondering this development. Our simple advice is: Bring them to trial, or free all others presently in custody anywhere, while we Nigerians plead guilty of naivety and gullibility in the extreme, punishable by more insurrection and anarchy.”