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106 escape from Boko Haram, received by Borno Govt

Attorney-Gen K.S Lawan leads delegation


Troops of the Multinational Joint Taskforce (MNJTF) on Tuesday received 106 civilians who escaped from the Boko Haram terrorists and surrendered.

94 of the escapees were Nigerians, who were handed over to a delegation of Borno government at a remote location in the republic of Chad.

Of the 94 Nigerians, there were 37 adult males, 17 adult females and 40 children.

The 106 escapees included Cameroonians and Chadian.

Commander of the MNJTF, Maj. Gen. Ibrahim Yusuf handed them over to Borno Government.’

Speaking, Maj. Gen. Yusuf said some of the persons of interest voluntarily surrendered to the Headquarters Sector 1 of the MNJTF in far North Cameroon, while the women and children were rescued.

Cross-section of women and children that escaped from Boko Haram
Cross-section of women and children that escaped from Boko Haram

Yusuf said while the military welcomed non-kinetic approach to the War.

He warned that operations would continue and that it will investigate some of the surrendered persons to ascertain their relationship with the terrorists.

According to Yusuf, this is a strong indication of success.

This, he said, is because, in counter insurgency operations, success is measured not just by the number of insurgents killed.

It is also measured by the number of those that are surrendering, as well as a reduction in their recruitment base .

“So, obviously this is a success indicator.

“It is because of the Multi National nature of the operations involving Cameroon, Chad, Niger and Nigeria , that by the concept of our operations, we operate seamlessly and that is why whether they surrender in Nigeria or they surrender in Cameroon, or Niger, it is the same thing for us .

“It is one cohesive force, but the onus now is on us.

“We have the guidelines and since they are Nigerians , we have to transfer them to the Nigerian government and the one person from Chad, we have to arrange to get him to Chad, so it is part of our mandate,” Maj. Gen Yusuf said.

Borno’s Attorney General and Commissioner of Justice, Kaka Shehu Lawan led six man delegation, including Commissioners of Women Affairs and Religious Affairs and special advisers to receive them.

In his remarks, he said the state government was going to profile, debrief, deradicalize and reintegrate the escapees.

He said those profiled as ex fighters would be sent to Nigerian military’s “operation safe corridor”, while the rescued women will undergo stages of counseling before they are debriefed.

“We received a report that a number of our citizens are here, surrendered to the MNJTF.

“We also have others that are not members of the Boko Haram sect.

Borno Government personnel that received the escapees
Borno Government personnel that received the escapees

“Pursuant to the clearance operation, they were rescued following the liberation of villages they were held captive.

”So we are here to see for ourselves, to ascertain how many of them are truly indigenes of Borno, how many are fighters?

“How many are not fighters? How many women and children.

“Secondly, having identified the number of fighters and non-fighters, women and children, we’ll plan for evacuation of those that are innocent.

“Those rescued as a result of clearance operation [will be sent] immediately to Maiduguri with a view to reintegrating them because, they are innocent.

”And the ones that are fighters, we’ll liase with “operation safe corridor”, and transfer them there with a view to deradicalizing them,” Lawan said.

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