The military authorities on Thursday said it would hand over 613 rehabilitated “low-risk repentant” terrorists to their state governments.
The 613 rehabilitated terrorists were said to be currently undergoing deradicalisation and rehabilitation handled by Operation Safe Corridor.
The Chief of Defence Staff, General Lucky Irabor, disclosed this during the fifth stakeholders’ meeting of Operation Safe Corridor in Abuja.
Irabor who was represented by the Chief of Defence Training and Operation, Maj. Gen. Adeyemi Yekini, said the meeting would exhaustively discuss the deradicalisation, rehabilitation, and reintegration programme ahead of the transfer of the rehabilitated clients to their state governments.
He said, “The OPSC was established by the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), in September 2015 as a window for willing and repentant terrorists to lay down their arms and undergo a structured DRR programme.
The scheme was a multi-agency and humanitarian operation utilising the expertise of over 17 services, ministries, departments, and agencies, supported by local and international organisations and friendly nations.
He said, “It is also important to mention that upon graduation from the programme, each client will be provided some food and personal items, as well as a start-up pack according to the trade learnt during training to enable them to set up small businesses and start a new life.”
We, therefore, recommended that the receiving state governments should provide the necessary support to enable the ex-combatants to wade through the transitional and most challenging phase of their lives.
“We are optimistic that working closely with local and traditional authorities, the states can deploy security apparatus at their disposal to effectively track and evaluate the re-integrated ex-combatants.
“I must emphasise that it is critical for all stakeholders involved in the reintegration processes to mitigate, or eliminate incidences of recidivism,” the CDS said.
He also said 83,000 insurgents had so far surrendered to the military adding that those captured had been tried and were serving various jail terms.
Irabor said, “These sustained operations continue to put pressure and confusion within the ranks of the adversary causing many to surrender to the armed forces.
“As of today, over 83,000 insurgents and their family members have surrendered, while those captured have been tried and convicted to various jail terms by the law courts.
“As we speak, many more captured combatants are being held in several correctional facilities and their trial is ongoing.”