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Only 5,000 of 100k ‘repentant insurgents’ were fighters, says commissioner

Only 5,000 of 100k ‘repentant insurgents’ were fighters, says commissioner
September 22
13:07 2023

Zuwaira Gambo, Borno commissioner for women affairs and social development, says only 5,000 of the 100,000 repentant Boko Haram members in the state were actual fighters.

Gambo spoke on Thursday while presenting a book titled “Borno Model” at an event to commemorate the 2023 international day of peace in Maiduguri, the state capital.

“Borno Model” is a book on the non-kinetic approach of the government in counter-insurgency operations.

She said majority of the repentant terrorists are women, children and farmers who were kidnapped by the insurgents from various parts of the state.

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“Contrary to fears by the public that 100,000 were insurgents, only about 5,000 are actual fighters. Most of the others are farmers, women and children held hostage by the insurgents,” NAN quoted Gambo as saying.

“Many of them are victims being held by the insurgents.”

She said the government usually ensures that those reintegrated passed through a rigorous three-week training on human rights from religious leaders and security operatives.

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She said the government also contacts the communities where they come from before they are reintegrated.

“We do not release the insurgents. We have records of the whereabouts of any person released,” she added.

The commissioner called on the international community to support the government in ensuring lasting peace in the state.

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