About 200 Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) from North East due to Boko Haram insurgency have thanked the Nigerian Army for working hard and sacrificing their lives to ensure that peace and normalcy return to the region.
The IDPs who were hitherto kept in Kuchigoro Camp and other annexes in Abuja, had on Friday, stormed the Unity Fountain to thank President Muhammadu Buhari and the Nigerian Army for liberating their villages from the grips of the Boko Haram insurgents.
The IDPs also saluted Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai, the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), for his tenacity, to make sure IDPs can return home.
Speaking on behalf of the former IDPs, Mrs. Maryam Nuhu, called on the relevant authorities to fish out those who had been sponsoring the Boko Haram sect that had made the country volatile.
She said, “For years, we were displaced persons in our own country, at the Kuchigoro IDPs camp and other annexes in Abuja and neighbouring states.
“The measure of comfort and care provided us almost made us resign to calling these camps home. But even if we had been quartered in the most glamorous of the hotels in the nation’s capital, the affinity for our ancestral lands would have still pulled us to return home as we did now.
“The only thing that would have kept us away from our home is the terror attacks of Boko Haram that uprooted us in the first place.
“However, Boko Haram has become history as far as we are concerned. Whatever the terror group is capable of right now is no different from the kind of criminality that can occur on the streets of any of the world’s many towns and cities,” she said.
Mrs. Maryam Nuhu continued, “Our towns and villages had been cleared of these terrorists. We can now confidently return home to pick up our lives from the points where we will meet them.
“Of course, the scars of our losses are there but they are scars that will remind us of the healing that sincere leadership can bring as opposed to the dark side of humanity that Boko Haram and its backers want us to know.
“Mr. President, thank you for making it possible for us to be returning home. Our sad story took a turn for the better because of the Calibre of military leaders you appointed.”
“We thank the Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai, for his tenacity. He went the extra mile to ensure IDPs can return home. From him, we have the assurance that we would be protected when we get home.”
The IDPs, therefore, called on Mr. President to intensify efforts towards providing whatever infrastructure are still lacking in our places.
“Mr. President should encourage his appointees to support IDPs to return home to start farming, agro-processing, and small-scale ventures that will guarantee everyone a quick win.
“We believe that returning home is the right thing to do and that now is the best time to do so. We do not wish for our ancestral lands to become wilderness neither do we want the leftover of Boko Haram fighters to get free spaces from where to plot further evil.
“When our towns and villages are occupied by us we can police them through community effort. But we will require that the Nigeria Police Force maintain a robust presence to complement what the Nigerian Army is already doing,” Nuhu said.