SARKIN Hausawa of Lagos, Alhaji Sani Kabir, yesterday, told the Federal Government that northerners in the South West have arrested more than 1,000 members of the Boko Haram insurgents in parts of the South West.
Speaking when the Arewa Council of Chiefs in the South West paid a visit to the Minister of Special Duties and Intergovernmental Affairs, Alhaji Kabiru Tanimu Turaki, SAN, in Abuja, Alhaji Kabir said the arrests were made at different times.
He said that those arrested were Boko Haram members who fled from the Civilian JTF/military onslaught on the insurgents in the North East and those who came to the South West to further the insurgency.
Kabir said the Council has taken it upon itself to ensure that Boko Haram did not take root in the South West because according to him, such a development would complicate the security challenges facing Nigeria.
He said, So far in the South west, we have peace and this is achieved through the collaboration of Arewa people and Arewa chiefs. If you can confirm with the security agencies, we have arrested more tham 1,000 Boko Haram members throughout the south west states. We promptly report any suspicious movement to the security agents because we believe that the problem is actually the Nigerian problem but if there is any breakdown of law and order in the south west, we are the prime targets irrespective of whether one is a member of Boko Haram or not.
“All the Arewa sarkis (kings) in the south west are up and doing to make sure that we do not allow any breakdown of law and order in our communities.”
On how they effected the the arrest, Kabir said, “we inform our leaders that when new people come into their midst, they should observe their behaviour. Some of the leaders in the south west are northerners, some of them are from Borno State, they can know. There were even instances where JTF came from Borno State to identify some of them.”
On their support for the re-election President Goodluck Jonathan, Alhaji Kabir said, “I will like to start by going back to 2011 electioneering campaign. There was a team that was led by the president and the vice president and they met with the Council members and we pledged to give our assistance and support during the election period and beyond. Since that time, there has been no communication between us and the president or the federal government.
Responding, the Minister of Special Duties and Intergovernmental Affairs, Alhaji Kabir Tanimu Turaki, who received the group on behalf of President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan thanked the Arewa leaders for their efforts to ensure that insurgency did not extend to the south west.