Military Restates Commitment to Rehabilitate Repentant Terrorists

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Major General John Enenche

Kingsley Nwezeh in Abuja

The Nigerian military thursday restated its commitment to Operation Safe Corridor (OPSC) launched to rehabilitate repentant terrorists under the Deradicalisation, Rehabilitation and Re-integration (DRR) project.

The operation has come under criticism in the face of the continuous attacks by terrorists in the North-east region while such programme is still in progress.

Addressing a press conference in Abuja, the Coordinator of Directorate of Defence Media Operations, Major General John Enenche, said Operation Safe Corridor (OPSC) was guided by the provisions of international humanitarian and human rights laws.

He said the operation was administered by 468 staff drawn from 17 organisations, including the Armed Forces of Nigeria (AFN), law enforcement and security agencies, other federal government agencies, including North East Development Commission (NEDC).

According to him, the scheme also enjoyed the support of local and international non-governmental organisations (NGO).

He listed the key implementation agencies to include United Nations International Children Emergency Fund (UNICEF), International Organisation for Migration (IOM), United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Department for International Development (DFID), Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) and North-East Regional Initiative (NERI).

Enenche said since its inception in 2016, OPSC has admitted 893 ex-combatants for the programme out of which 280, including two Chadians, were successfully reintegrated into the society through their respective national and state authorities.

“It is not a process of assembling raw repentant ex-combatants to inject back into the society by the military, rather, it is an international best practice for conflict management backed by relevant laws with the concurrence of key stakeholders such as international organisations and MDAs among others,” he said.