“I Feel The New Peace in Borno”  –  Op’ Safe Corridor Former Coordinator, General Ashafa

By Abdulkareem Haruna

The former Coordinator of the Operation Safe Corridor, Bamidele Shafa has commended the government and people of Borno state for working hard with relevant stakeholders and duty bearers to achieve the emerging peace he saw upon his arrival to the state recently.

Mr Ashafa, a retired army Major General, was in Maiduguri, Borno state to attend a one day policy dialogue on “Mechanism For Enhancing Community Acceptance Of Returnees In Borno State”

He was also supposed deliver a paper on “De-radicalization and Disengagement Strategies and Challenges for Successful Implementation”

Delivering a brief goodwill message ahead his presentation said he was thrilled at the ambience of peace that welcomed him when he alighted from the aircraft at the Maiduguri international airport.

“I came in last night and I saw peace the moment I alighted the aircraft,” General Shafa said.

“Driving through the city of Maiduguri was a rewarding experience because I felt peace and for me because I served here during my service years and I knew what the situation in Maiduguri used to be at that moment,” he said.

The retired general called on the people of Borno state to sustain the peace and support the government in seeing to the end of the conflict.

“I pray that this peace remains and it is a responsibility for all of us to make it happen,” he said.

The former Operation Safe Corridor Coordinator said the people need to embrace the emerging peace by forgiving one another in order to forge ahead.

“Yes, people have been wronged, people have been offended, people are pained, people are still suffering; but for peace to reign, people must be able to accept this reconciliation; it is difficult but it is something we have to do. God will us to have a large heart to allow peace to return and reign in Maiduguri, Borno state and the Northeast and Nigeria. It is doable and we can do it.”

The one day policy dialogue organised by PACHE, according to the President of the organisation, Ambassador Ahmed Shehu, is to bring stakeholders together to discuss,  make key suggestion on the way forward and issue a communique that will become a tool for policy advocacy.

“It is very important for us to appreciate the role of history; because no matter what there are things you will learn or improve upon when you sit to discuss as stakeholders,” Mr Shehu said.

The one-day policy had other  resource persons speaking on thematic topics  “Community Acceptance of Rehabilitation, Reconstruction and Resettlement; Women and Youth Perspective Community Acceptance and Returnees”

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