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Umara pleads with Boko Haram terrorists to lay down arms

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Governor Babagana Umara of Borno State


Northwest governors, IGP meet in Katsina over insecurity, grant amnesty to bandits
CSOs, others blame killings on corruption

Borno State Governor Professor Babagana Umara has urged indigenes of Jakana and collaborators of Boko Haram terrorists to lay down their arms. Umara made the call yesterday at Jakana village, while addressing the people during a visit over last Tuesday’s attack and kidnapping of two members of a vigilance group.

The terrorists, who operated in gun trucks, also snatched bags of grains and petrol before they were repelled by troops in Maiduguri.He said that as information dissemination is important, the people should endeavor to promptly provide credible information on activities of terrorists.

“We shall use the Operation Safe Corridor of the Army for any willing members of Boko Haram to surrender for rehabilitation and re-integration,” he said.Besides, to address insecurity occasioned by killings, kidnapping, rustling and banditry in the North West geopolitical zone, governors of the region have met to discuss the challenges in Katsina State yesterday.

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The Guardian learnt that the governors discussed the possibility of granting amnesty to repentant bandits and creation of synergy between the state governments to tackle insecurity in the Northwest.

Governors of Kebbi, Abubakar Atiku Bagudu, Abdullahi Umar Ganduje (Kano); Bello Mutawalle (Zamfara); Aminu Waziri Tambuwal (Sokoto) and host, Aminu Bello Masari (Katsina), attended the meeting at the council chambers of the General Muhammadu Buhari Government House.

However, Niger State Governor was represented, while Kaduna State Governor Ahmed el-Rufai and his Jigawa State counterpart, Badaru Abubakar were being expected at the event.Also in attendance were Inspector General of Police (IGP) Mohammed Adamu, commissioners of police from the states and leaders of the Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN).

Speaking, Adamu said the meeting was aimed at adopting measures taken by Kebbi and Zamfara states in ending banditry and other vices in the affected states.However, they resolved to grant amnesty to repentant bandits willing to hand over their arms to government and outlawed volunteer security outfits complementing regular security agencies to tackle insecurity in their states.

Meanwhile, civil society organisations (CSOs) and other stakeholders have blamed the increasing insecurity in the country on corruption and impunity, noting: “Only an ambitious and robust anti-corruption crusade can end insecurity in Nigeria.”

They spoke at a town hall meeting organised by the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) in collaboration with UK Aid in Abuja.Speaking, a professor of Law and Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Yemi Akinseye-George in a paper titled: Practical Strategies to Mobilise Citizens to Participate in the Fight Against Corruption, described corruption as the greatest obstacle to security, development and equality in any society.

Responding, Chairman, Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), Professor Bolaji Owasanoye, represented by Hassan Hafiz Mohammed said: “Official oath of secrecy cannot and should never be used as a pretext by public officials not to disclose information on corruption matters within their ministries, departments and agencies.”

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Babagana UmaraBoko Haram
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