Borno State senator, Ali Ndume, whose constituency is one of the epicentres of Boko Haram insurgency, has flatly rejected the newly introduced bill meant to create an agency for repentant insurgents.
Ndume, who is also the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Army, in an interview with Channels Television, said he was completely against the bill, that was initiated by his colleague from Yobe State, Ibrahim Gaidam.
The Boko Haram Bill is aimed at creating a national agency that would see to the rehabilitation, de-radicalisation, and integration of repentant insurgents in the country.
It was listed on the Senate order paper on Thursday for the First Reading, but Ndume said that the bill is out rightly unacceptable and his colleagues know his position on this.
“I personally disagree with that. The war is not over and some criminals that have been killing people you say that you are doing Operation Safe Corridor for them.
“I am completely against that idea. They know my position on that, you can’t do that.
“It is when you win the war and some people surrender that you think about something like that,” Ndume said.
He added that the idea of the bill will only make Boko Haram have more recruits since they are sure of rehabilitation and reintegration into society.
“You are just telling people to go and join Boko Haram and then repent and become something (sic) that’s a totally unacceptable idea and a way of solving the problem”, he stated.
The Bill was sponsored by Gaidam, representing Yobe East District, and it is captioned ‘National Agency for the Education, Rehabilitation, De-radicalisation and Integration of repentant insurgents in Nigeria (Est, etc) Bill, 2020 (SB. 340)’.
He is also the immediate past governor of Yobe, one of the worst-hit states by insurgents in the north-eastern part of the country, alongside Borno and Adamawa States.