The Senator representing Borno South, Ali Ndume, has said repentant Boko Haram insurgents “that have blood on their hands” must be investigated and prosecuted.
In August, the Nigerian Army claimed that over 100 Boko Haram militants and their families have surrendered to troops.
It led to a lot of criticism and outrage from several quarters, as many have kicked against the de-radicalisation and rehabilitation initiative for the insurgents.
Ndume, speaking after a meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari, in Abuja on Saturday, said: “My stance on this has not changed, only that maybe people interpret it the way they want.”
“Normally, when you get to war level, you are expected to either defeat the enemy or the enemy surrenders. Once the enemy surrenders, you lose the right of summarily executing him because he is an enemy. You also don’t have the right to summarily declare him innocent and say, oh, you have sinned, go and sin no more.
“What I’m saying initially and I still maintain this position, in as much as we welcome the surrendering of Boko Haram, it is very important that we follow the due process, according to the law of the land and the international law.
“That is to say, take them in, profile them, process them, investigate them, interrogate them and then those that are innocent, should be let go, and those that have blood on their hands, they should be appropriately prosecuted.
“Once the person surrenders, now, he has an advantage. Once you surrender, you cannot just be summarily convicted, you will be given the right to go to court and declare your innocence or otherwise. That is what I’m asking for,” he said.