ABUJA, Jan. 9 (Xinhua)
A Nigerian security consultant, Max Gbanite on Wednesday joined the clamor for amnesty to members of the Boko Haram sect to end the spate of bombings in the West African country. Gbanite told reporters during the two-day National Summit on Security Challenges in Nigeria held in the capital Abuja that the insurgency by the sect could only be addressed through amnesty. This is the only way because you cannot fight a man who agrees that death is a better alternative, he added.
“It doesn’t hurt to give a window of
opportunity. We must give fellow
Nigerians hope,” he said. “What will the president lose if he says from Feb. 1 to Feb. 29, I am giving amnesty to anybody who claims to be a member of Boko Haram,” the expert told reporters.
Gbanite, who also suggested that the
amnesty should be extended to those who possessed light arms, said the
government should encourage them to
surrender the arms by buying them back. He said there was no terrorist group in
the country as none had been certified as such. “For any group to be called a terrorist group, the Attorney General of the Federation and National Security Adviser must apply for that group to be certified,” he added. He said because no group had been branded as such, it was difficult to try anybody as a terror suspect. The consultant called on President Goodluck Jonathan to visit Yobe, Borno and Gombe states and other areas to sympathize with the victims of the attacks.
Earlier, in a presentation at the summit,
Charles Omoregie, a retired army general said although Nigeria was not in a state of war, its security was threatened by terrorism. He attributed the cause of the threat to poverty, unemployment, injustice and bad governance.