*Defends people’s freedoms of information and expression concerning failing counter terror war:
The Nigerian Army and the current Federal Government under President Muhammadu Buhari should take the full blame for the spike in deadly attacks by the armed boko haram terrorists in the North East of Nigeria including the deadliest attack by any terror group globally which was recorded in a border town between Borno state and Chad Republic in which nearly one hundred Nigerian soldiers were massacred.
HURIWA accused President Muhammadu Buhari and the military top command of systematically undermining and sabotaging the ongoing counter terror war by Nigeria by the intermittent releases into the open society of previously detained members of the armed boko haram terrorists who were caught in the line of fire but has been set free instead of ensuring that the full weight of the Nigerian law including the anti -terrorism laws are brought to bear on persons who had waged unlawful war on the Nigerian State and are responsible for some estimated 30,000 killings of innocent people and the destruction of the towns; villages and livelihoods of North East of Nigeria estimated at well over $100 billion USD. HURIWA reminded the Nigerian government that these persons been released back into the society even when millions of citizens thrown into the internally displaced persons camps are left to wallow in mass poverty, hinger and diseases including violent sexual abuses by soldiers and armed security forces are the same hitherto armed boko haram terrorists that destroyed the livelihoods of these unfortunate members of the society who are internally displaced and are dying in their numbers due to neglect by the Nigerian government.
HURIWA stated that it is unknown to international history and laws that a bunch of mass murderers arrested whilst committing atrocious decimation; degrading and destructions of precious lives of citizens are then rebranded and released into the larger society even whilst their other comrades in arms are engaged in ferocious warfare against the state resulting in fatalities including the high tolls of military deaths and the destruction of military assets purchased with taxpayers money.
“It would seem that those who wield political power currently are not bothered about the larger implications of flouting extant terrorism laws and all the national laws prohibiting unlawful killings of citizens by applying the carrot and cash award system to placate former terrorists who would have continued with their dare devil activities of mass killings if not that they were captured in the battle fields by the armed combatants of the Nigerian security forces. Why has the government displayed this overwhelming desire to runbish the Nigerian constitution and the sacred laws governing the treatment of those caught violating the laws of the land? What government has done amounts to an illegality and is a double standards if mass killers of boko haram extraction are treated as sacred cows whereas other less offenders are made to go through the court system and most of them are languishing under excruciating and life threatening situations in the decrepit prison structures across the Country and are even starved to death. Why can’t President Muhammadu Buhari also order the opening of all prison gates so prisoners and inmates can go home since our laws means nothing to the current Federal Government? This government by this atrocious sabotage of our laws has made the Country a laughing stock in the international community and has encouraged the continuous waging of war against the Nigerian state by armed non state actors since it would seem that some persons in top government and military positions are milking Nigeria dry from the humonguous cash voted for national security”.
HURIWA recalled that Army authority said it has graduated and released 155 ex-Boko Haram fighters after they underwent an 11-month De-radicalisation, Rehabilitation and Reintegration (DDR) programme, tagged: “Operation Safe Corridor.”
HURIWA recalled that the coordinator of the programme, Major General Bamidele Shafa, disclosed this at the weekend at a graduation ceremony of the ex-fighters at a training camp in Gombe State claiming also that the repentant Boko Haram members would be reintegrated back into their respective communities after the 11 months of vocational and de-radicalisation training by relevant government agencies.
HURIWA recalled that General Shafa said the released ex-fighters are the second batch of the former insurgents to be released and integrated back to their respective communities since the inception of the programme in 2016 just as he called on other Boko Haram fighters still in the bush to come out and surrender to the Nigerian Army to be reformed and rejoined with their families adding that the army has put a monitoring mechanism comprising traditional rulers and Civilian JTF to monitor their movement after they are released from the camp.
HURIWA lamented that the Chief of Defence Staff, General Ayobami Olanishakin, said since the inception of the ‘Operation Safe Corridor’ and opening of the camp in 2016, 254 repentant Boko Haram members were rehabilitated and released back to their states.
HURIWA dismissed as grave crime against the Nigerian state, the systematic releases of armed terrorists by the same government whose officials subscribed to the Constitutional tenets which make provisions for how the Courts of competent jurisdiction should deal decisively with offenders including terrorists. The group wondered the wisdom in releasing terrorists when their other members are engaged in serious battles with the military just as the group stated that even the USA and UK do not have the practice of placating terrorists no matter their new tag as repentant terrorists.
Relatedly, HURIWA has faulted the threats by the Army authority to drag social media account holders sharing videos of the recent attack on soldiers resulting in high fatalities because it is fake just as the Rights group wondered why the Army could not circulate the genuine video so Nigerians judge for themselves instead of brandishing the cyber crime law on Nigerians who are genuinely worried that the procurement corruption in the purchases of fighting weapons has exposed our troops to unmitigated killings by armed boko haram terrorists. HURIWA reminded the Army that the fundamental freedoms such as right to freedom of information and expression are guaranteed in the Constitution which supercedes the cyber crime law. HURIWA said if there is anyone who should be tried for undermining nationsl security, then ot should be the Defence contractors and military chiefs who are diverting arms’ fund to their private pockets and buying substandard weapons for the troops which is why so many of them are been killed by the armed boko haram terrorists who were constantly described by the current President as technically defeated.