By Yakubu Uba
An NGO, the Peace Ambassador Centre for Humanitarian and Empowerment (PACHE) has urged communities in Borno to forgive and accept repentant Boko Haram terrorists.
President of the PACHE, Amb. Ahmed Shehu made the call in Maiduguri during an event to mark the 2022 International Day of Peace.
The day, also officially known as World Peace Day, is a United Nations-sanctioned holiday observed annually on Sept. 21.
Shehu said the Borno Government has began the process of reintegrating the repentant terrorists in communities and that there is need to use the commemoration of the peace day for people to accept the repentant and move on.
”Borno needs to celebrate the day for obvious reason after facing 13 years of insurgency that led to loss of lives, mass destruction and displacement of many in north east .
”We call on the Borno government to ensure that civil society organisations are strongly involved in the process of sensitising the public on the reintegration process.
”We also urge stakeholders to use this occasion to come up way a out to fight racism and build peace in line with the theme of this year’s International Day of Peace, particularly at this critical time that the nation is going into a general election,” he said.
In his opening remarks, the Borno Commissioner for Information, Alhaji Babakura Abba-Jato who spoke on the significance of the day, lauded the people of Borno for their resilience and the need to sustain the tempo and reintegration process.
Also speaking, the Borno Commissioner for Poverty Alleviation and Youth Empowerment, Alhaji Saina Buba who highlighted the various interventions by the state government to address the issue of poverty, called for support for the programme to succeed.
In his remarks, the Borno Team Lead of Managing Conflict in Nigeria (MCN) programme of British Council, Mr Amin Buba who reiterated the commitment of MCN in addressing conflicts in Nigeria, stressed the need to implement recommendations of the meeting to add value to peace building in Borno.
In his remarks on behalf of the military at the occasion, Capt. B.A Amakiri who described the military as agents committed to peace, said so far over 80,000 insurgents had surrendered out of which about 16,000 were combatants.
Amakiri said the successes recorded was 25 per cent through kenetic approach and 75 per through non-kenetic approach that involved the public support to the military.
He called for more support to the military and other security organisations to facilitate the return of lasting peace for more developments.
In their respective goodwill messages, the managements of University of Maiduguri (UNIMAID) and Borno State University (BOSU) reiterated the commitment of the institutions to peace, pointing out that the established centres for research on peace and conflict resolutions in that direction.
NAN reports that awards were presented to some youths who distinguished themselves in areas of innovation and peace promotion. (NAN)