By Chibuike Nwabuko
Abuja (Sundiata Post) – Senator representing Yobe East senatorial zone, Senator Ibrahim Gaidam who, sponsored the bill for an Act for the establishment of agency for repentant insurgents has given reasons why he came up with it.
According to him, concept of de-radicalization, rehabilitation and reintegration of repentant insurgents are global best practice.
Civilised countries including Britain, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Egypt, Somalia, Pakistan, Syria and Iraq have formulated various models of de-radicalization and rehabilitation programmes to combat the menace of radicalization with success.
Gaidam made this known while addressing newsmen Tuesday in Abuja.
Sundiata Post recalled that Senator Gaidam at the plenary of the Nigerian Senate on Thursday sponsored “A bill for an Act to establish National Agency for the Education, De-radicalization, Rehabilitation and Reintegration of Repentant Insurgents which passed first reading.
He explained that Boko Haram is becoming increasingly aggressive since it’s inception in 2009, marked by extreme brutality and explicit targeting of civilians, resulting in continued infliction of massive casualty on citizens, particularly in Northeast Nigeria.
He said “It has become necessary for us to go to the drawing board and adopt an alternative approach, in addition to the military option which has so far performed significantly well.
“There is no doubt that many members of the insurgents group have defected and many more are willing to repent given a window of opportunity and this is confirmed by many organizations including NGOs that have unalloyed access to Boko Haram.
“There is the need for a more strategic and comprehensive approach to entice those members of the group who, after realizing the futility of the course they are pursuing have eventually decided to voluntarily lay down their arms and chose the path of peace” Gaidam said.
He reiterated the need for the establishment of the agency to accommodate the defectors.