Major Gen. Rogers Nicholas, the Theatre Commander, Operation Lafiya Dole, said two Boko Haram commanders and the insurgents’ physician have surrendered to Nigerian Army.
He made the disclosure when he presented the surrendered insurgents in Maiduguri. Nicholas said a woman leader of the insurgents’ group and three children also surrendered to the troops at Kumshe in Bama Local Government Area of Borno.
He added that the insurgents voluntarily surrendered, noting that the move was acceptable under the Safe Corridor Scheme initiated by Federal Government to encourage the insurgents to lay down their arms.
The theatre commander explained that the military initiated contact with the insurgents to encourage them to surrender, adding that more insurgents had indicated their interest to lay down their arms.
He said: “we had a contact group and two insurgents’ commanders, a local doctor and their women leader and their children surrendered to the troops. “We gave them clothes, food and med*cation and assured them of safety: we are not killing anybody.
“Our duty is to protect lives and property, we call on the insurgents in the bush to come out, surrender and join the peace building process.”
He pointed out that the surrendered insurgents would be engaged in deradicalisation, rehabilitation and skill acquisition training programme for possible integration into the society. In their submission, Ali Musa, the insurgents’ physician, said he conducted surgical operations such as bullet extraction, appendix, treatment of wounded insurgents, ante natal and post-natal services in the camp.
Ali said he was indoctrinated and misled by the sect leaders, adding that the sect activities had damaged his life. Umar Ibrahim, one of the insurgents’ commanders, said he surrendered voluntarily as he became fed up with the group’s inhuman activities.
Ibrahim disclosed that hundreds of insurgents were willing to surrender to the troops but their leaders prevented them from doing so. “We were told that the army will kill us and feed on our flesh when we surrender.
The sect’s leaders also planted landmines to stop us from coming to the troops. “Many insurgents are willing to surrender in view of the fact that we are against the destructive ideologies propagated by the sect.
“We hardly feed, people are starving due to the lack of food in the camp.
We want peace and we want to join in building peace in our country, we ask Nigerians to forgive us,” he added.
Ibrahim called on other insurgents to surrender and commended the military for taking care of them.