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335 Boko Haram/ISWAP terrorists, 746 family members surrender to Nigerian troops in Bama, Northeast region

A total of 335 Boko Haram/Islamic State in West Africa Province (ISWAP) terrorists and 746 family members including adult women and children have laid down their arms and surrendered to the troops of Operation Hadin Kai (OPHK) in Bama, Northeast Nigeria.

The family members also include one of the abducted girls of Chibok Secondary School and her two children born to a surrendered terrorist.

This is just as scores of ISWAP terrorists were killed as troops of the Nigerian Army and the Civilian Joint Task Force (CJTF) on Saturday foiled an attack on Damboa town, Borno State.

The terrorists launched the attack around 8pm but met heavy resistance from the Army. The terrorists however set 2 Hilux vehicles ablaze belonging to the CJTF.

During the reception for the surrendering terrorists and their families, the Army said it had so far received 605 ISWAP Boko Haram/ISWAP terrorists and family members.

But during the distribution of new cloths and assorted food items, groceries and toiletries to the surrendered terrorists and their families, a head count resulted into 335 terrorists and 746 family members.

Sources said that in an intelligence-driven operation, 229 of the terrorists’ family members, mostly women and children, were handed over to the Borno State Government.

The sources confirmed the public statements of the leadership of the Armed Forces of Nigeria especially the Nigerian Army that the massive turnout of surrendering of the terrorists and their families is because of the intensified air and ground operations targeted at their camps and hideouts and environs.

In addition, the terrorists have confirmed that they were witnessing unbearable hardship including overwhelming famine, discontent, internal skirmishes and health challenges.

Meanwhile, the major kingpin of the surrendering terrorists was their Chief Bomb Expert, Musa Adamu AKA Mala Musa Abuja and his second in command, Usman Adamu AKA Abu Darda along with their families and followers.

The Acting General Officer Commanding (GOC), 7 Division and Commander Sector 1 OPHK, Brigadier General Abdulwahab Adelokun Eyitayo, was at Headquarters 21 Special Armoured Brigade, Bama on Saturday to receive the set of the surrendered Boko Haram terrorists and their families.

According to the GOC, their decision to drop their arms and come out is highly commendable, adding that they should also try and talk to their brothers and colleagues in the forest to come out and embrace the new life of peace and rehabilitation. 

General Eyitayo spoke through an interpreter and disclosed that they will undergo some rehabilitation process at a Government facility before reintegration into the larger society.

However, the Nigerian military joined forces to intensify its both kinetic and non-kinentic approach towards the ongoing fight against insurgency in order to leverage on the knowledge of Musa Adamu and Usman Adamu and also with the current wave of turnout by terrorists to enable her achieve both short and long term counter-insurgency gains in the North East.

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