Senator representing Plateau North in the National Assembly, Istifanus Gyang, has condemned the bill seeking to create an agency for repentant Boko Haram terrorists, describing it as an insult to Nigerians.
The bill for the creation of National Agency for Education, Rehabilitation, De-radicalisation and Integration of repentant insurgents in Nigeria which was sponsored by Senator Ibrahim Gaidam, a former Governor of Yobe State representing Yobe East Senatorial passed first reading in the Senate last week
Senator Gyang who dissociated himself from the bill, in a statement in Jos on Sunday said the Bill is not only uncalled for but assaults the sensibility of Nigerians in view of the fact that most of the victims and communities affected by insurgency, banditry and violent attacks are still languishing from neglect and lack of the much-needed government attention and intervention despite repeated calls.
The statement signed by the Senator’s Media aide, Mr Musa Ashoms, said “Attempts at certain quarters to compare and equate Boko Haram terrorists with the Niger Delta agitators which attracted the Presidential Amnesty Initiative and Programme under the administration of President Yar’Adua, is, to Senator Gyang, ludicrous.
“Moreso, the Presidential Amnesty Programme was not a product of legislation but of government policy and has remained so. It was an intervention programme with a timeline and terminal date, unlike the Pro-Boko Haram Bill which intends to create an agency that will exist in perpetuity.
By the proposed legislation, terrorism becomes a permanent feature to feed and sustain the activities of the agency which can best be described as a terrorist breeding agency”
“The Bill is simply an attempt to use the National Assembly particularly the Senate, to acquiesce, placate and incentivize terrorism.
The Senator, therefore, called on all Senators to reject the Bill given its obvious negative implications for the security of the nation stressing that “to do otherwise is to incentivize terrorism and put the nation in perpetual harm’s way”.