Boko Haram and ISWAP commanders have eliminated over 300 insurgents and their families who were coming out of Sambisa Forest to surrender to government authorities in North East Nigeria.
The terrorists carried out the mass killing of its members to frustrate the ongoing dialogue and surrendering process of repentant terrorists in Borno State, the government said.
The special adviser to Borno State governor on security affairs, Brig Gen. Ishaq Abdullahi (rtd), made the revelation yesterday in an interview in Maiduguri.
According to him, more than 90,000 Boko Haram fighters and their families have so far surrendered to the state government in the last 17 months due to the peace dialogue initiative with the fighters.
He said over 95 percent of Boko Haram diehard commanders have been killed either through military operations or in-fighting between the warring factions.
Abdullahi said, “The advantage we have in this peace dialogue is the death of the late Abubakar Shekau and the political will as well as the willingness of the people to forgive.
“They warned that nobody should pick my calls or be eliminated in Sambisa, they actually eliminated more than 300 fighters and their families who were coming out. Just last week they killed three commanders and their families who were about to escape. It is sad to hear that but this is to tell you what we are doing.
“So, any surrendered Boko Haram you see in the camp now have risked his life to come out, in fact there was one that was coming out and he said sir, pray for me, so it is 50/ 50 for them. It is so bad that the commanders are killing the children, women and disabled people to instill fear in them.”
“Just last week, there was a video that they wore red clothes on them, they were Amirs that had accepted to come but unfortunately they were eliminated to instill fear in those who are willing to surrender,” Ishaq revealed.
“Again, we are so lucky that over 95 percent of Boko Haram commanders diehard are dead, they are dead. It makes it easy for us to speak with them and persuade them to drop their weapon to embrace peace.
“I must say this infighting between Islamic State of West African Province (ISWAP) and Boko Haram fighters has helped us but mostly importantly, the death of commanders played a key role in our success.”