In the ongoing fight against insecurity in Northern Nigeria against the bandits and Boko Haram terrorists, two tactics have been employed which are the kinetic and non-kinetic approaches. Lately, however, these options seem to have been made available only to the terrorists, while bandits appear doomed to face the wrath of the military. Yet, according to the Minister of Police Affairs, Maigari Dingyadi, it turns out that this may not be the case after all. View pictures in App save up to 80% data.
Recall that in the war against terrorism, Operation Safe Corridor (OSC) was set up to cater for both repentant Boko Haram and ISWAP terrorists. It is a program meant to rehabilitate them and reintroduce them into the society as changed persons. Despite controversies surrounding OSC, it continues to function till this day, as it was decided that the war on terror can not be won by fighting alone. This, by the way is a non-kinetic approach, as it does not involve physical force or violence.
As for the bandits, on the other hand, it seemed to have been a foregone conclusion that eliminating them is the only option. This came after several attempts to grant amnesty to the criminals ended in failure, as several of them returned to their evil ways after being forgiven. This prompted the military to order its units to kill all bandits, despite pleas from people like Sheik Gumi for the continued use of amnesty.
It therefore comes as a surprise to learn from the Minister of Police Affairs, that bandits who surrender can still be forgiven and rehabilitated. Maigari Dingyadi said that even though the criminals have committed various atrocities, international law prevents the government from killing them should they surrender. He said that in this case, the government will be saddled with the responsibility of reintroducing them into the society.
The Minister made this assurance even as he fully supported the military onslaught against the unrepentant ones among the bandits. He as well assured Nigerians that those among the criminals who surrender will be closely monitored by the government, to ensure they do not revert to a life of crime.
Going by this, it is clear that the treatment of bandits will be the same as that of Boko Haram terrorists. While the fight will be taken to them if they choose to resist, they will also be forgiven and given second chances if they surrender.