The Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Sadiya Umar Farouq says the Ministry has contributed immensely to the non-kinetic strategy of managing surrendered insurgents for their rehabilitation and reintegration process in the North East.
The Minister made this known at the opening ceremony of the 3-Day Seminar on Rehabilitation of Repentant Insurgents in the North East, organized by the Ministry and Office of the National Security Adviser in collaboration with the Nigeria Army Resource Centre, in Abuja.
She said the Ministry as a member of Operation Safe Corridor National Steering Committee and member of National Action Plan Steering Committee on Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism (PCVE) coordinated by the Counter Terrorism Centre (CTC) in the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA) has contributed immensely to the non-kinetic strategy of managing surrendered insurgents for their rehabilitation and reintegration process. Food and non-food items, including starter packs, have been contributed for the rehabilitation and reintegration of the ex-combatants directly by the Ministry and some of its Agencies (NEDC, NEMA, NCFRMI).
Speaking through her representative, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Dr Nasir Sani- Gwarzo, mni, NPOM, she said “It is worthy of note that the Ministry recently conducted a survey on victims of terrorism with the view to identifying and providing the needed psychosocial support to the affected persons.
In search of sustainable humanitarian response, the Ministry has adopted the United Nations principle of Tripple Nexus approach which provides linkages to humanitarian response that leads to development as well as peace building. Hence, the ministry leading other relevant MDAs and organization have developed a home-grown National Humanitarian Development Peace framework which provide a holistic response while applying area-based approach. This is expected to guide all humanitarian response in Nigeria and we hope the outcome of your deliberation will align with the framework”
The Minister stated that the insurgency in the NE has brought about untold hardship, destruction and loss of lives to the people of the North East and the 3-Day seminar is aimed among other things to examine modalities for the management of surrendered terrorist in the North East.
“For the Ministry, this seminar is very apt because it provides a veritable platform to share lessons learnt from various activities we have implemented in the past, identify gaps and come up with roadmap for future interventions. It all showcases a good practices of civil security relationship in providing sustainable humanitarian intervention”.
She urged participants to take the seminar serious and give it the best attention it deserves. . “The Ministry is always available to give all the necessary support needed to alleviate the conditions of our vulnerable persons and the coordination of all humanitarian responses. I thank the NSA, who is also a co-chair of the National Humanitarian Coordination Committee (NHCC), and his team as well as the Military authorities for the zeal and desire to build sustainable peace in our society” she added.
The Chief of Army Staff ( CoAS), Lt Gen Faruk Yahaya, CFR, in his welcome address stated that the kinetic efforts of the military has led to the surrendering of over 87,000 terrorists and their families in the N/E . They have laid down their arms and embraced peace.
He said the responsibilities for the rehabilitation and reintegration of the repentant insurgents goes beyond the responsibilities of the military and security agencies.
He called on both the military and relevant stakeholders to cooperate and perform their roles to win the war against terrorism in Nigeria because the task is enormous and the time is of essence.
The Executive Governor of Borno State, His Excellency, Prof. Babagana Zulum, represented by his Special Adviser on Security Matters, Brig. Gen., A. Sabi Ishaq, (RTD), in a keynote address gave an overview of the management and reintegration of surrendered Boko Haram and Islamic West Africa Province terrorists in the North East.
He discussed the operations and activities of the insurgents and reasons for their mass surrender and how they were encouraged to drop their guns and embrace peace.He stated the need for more support from the Federal government and Donor agencies towards the rehabilitation and reintegration of repentant insurgents.
Earlier, the Director General, Nigerian Army Resource Centre, Maj. Gen. G.A Wahab (RTD), said the seminar was on handling and management of repentant insurgents in the North East. He stressed the need on how to manage the huge number of repentant insurgents before their reintegration into the society.
Other participants at the seminar include Representatives of State governments, Ambassadors, representative of MDAs, Military and Security Agencies, Office of the NSA, Resource persons and CSOs/ NGOs.