Army Spokesperson Onyema Nwachukwu stated this when he announced the gale of surrender by the insurgents in a statement on Monday.
Nwachukwu said that the 186 terrorists consisted of their wives and other family members surrendered to the Nigerian troops of Operation HADIN KAI at Forward Operational Base (FOB) Ajiri.
He noted that the terrorist organisations had resorted to media propaganda to douse the tension caused by the recent surrender by most of their members.
“Following the recent unprecedented and massive surrendering of Boko Haram Terrorists in Bama Operational area on 2 and 4 August, 2021 respectively, there has been confusion and severe apprehension in the camps of the Islamic State of West Africa Province especially amongst its top ranking commanders over the depleting strength of its members, which has drastically dwindled their overall fighting efficiency,” he said.
“It is against this backdrop that the terrorists group opted for the use of propaganda via AMAQ Terrorists Media Wing with the aim to portray the group as if it is still a potent force in the North East.
“The current trend of apprehension in their camps was further aggravated by the recent alarming turn out of members of the terrorists group, who came out in droves with their families to lay down their arms and surrender to own troops at Mafa Local Government Area on 14 August, 2021.
“A total of 186 Boko Haram Terrorists members led by their Amir, Manye Aga, comprising 67 adult males, 54 adult females and 65 children surrendered to troops of Operation HADIN KAI at Forward Operational Base (FOB) Ajiri. Items recovered from the surrendered terrorists include, several AK 47 rifles and magazines, a locally made pistol and 8 locally fabricated daggers.
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“Similarly, on 15 August, 2021, the Theatre took custody of additional Boko Haram fighters, comprising 4 adult males, 11 adult females and 18 children from Landanli, Azah, Ngaridua and Kondilla villages, who surrendered to own troops of 151 Task Force Battalion, Banki Junction in Bama.
“It is also worthy of note that the terrorists are overwhelmed with palpable fear and are making desperate efforts to halt the ongoing surrendering of their fighters from the Tumbus and Sambisa axis.”
He noted that ISWAP was yet to come to terms with the reality of its current predicament, which had had a serious negative impact on its prowess.
The statement added that the Nigerian military was more resolute in the ongoing fight against insurgency, banditry and sundry crimes in the country.
There are mixed reactions among Nigerians over the olive branch being offered by the Nigerian government to the insurgents who have been responsible for the deaths of hundreds of Nigerians and displacements in the North-East.
The Chairman of the Senate Committee on Army Ali Ndume had warned the Nigerian government and Army against granting what he called ‘blanket amnesty’ to the surrendered insurgents.
Ndume, who spoke on Channels Television last week, said the insurgents should not be rewarded with a pat on the back or pampered.
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He said he was not surprised at the development due to the hostile environment the troops had created for the terrorists, but the authorities should ensure that the seemingly apologetic insurgents were carefully profiled without any rush to have them return to their communities.
The lawmaker was of the opinion that the Army should be more focused on ensuring that the Boko Haram war was brought to an end even faster than it had been projected in various quarters.
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