The Kabiru Turaki-led Presidential Committee on Dialogue and Peaceful Resolution of Security Challenges in the North,?Tuesday?submitted its conclusive report to President Goodluck Jonathan.

This is even as the President stated that there will be no compensation for victims of the Boko Haram attacks in the country. He however stated that gvernment would find ways to assist those who have been affected one way or the other.

The committee in it’s report recommended the setting up of a Victims Support Fund for victims of insurgency to be administered by a new agency established specifically to assist the victims.

It also recommended the setting up of an advisory committee on continuous dialogues that will have powers to advise the President on all matters related to dialogue and resolution of crisis.

The President had in April this year set up the Presidential Committee on Dialogue and Peaceful Resolution of Security Challanges in the North. The committee, which had been given three months to come up with resolutions and recommendations, had in August gotten an extension of two months.

The committee while submitting its report to the president at the Presidential villa, admitted that the leadership of the insurgent group had refused to have any further dialogue with them despite all their efforts.

The chairman of the committee said: “some of our difficulties in having a productive dialogue include the refusal of their leaders to submit to dialogue. However many of the key members of the insurgents both in detention and at large have positively responded to contacts and have accepted the dialogue option as capable of full resolution of the conflict.”

It was in this vein that the committee recommended that the president should set up an advisory committee on continuous dialogue to continue from where they stopped.

The committee also recommended that the president should set up what they called victims support fund as a matter of urgency to assist victims of the insurgency.

The committee also said that in the course of it work it discovered that the absence of effective conflict early warning response mechanism and the palpable impunity in crimes and other acts of violence due to absence of deterrent measures taken to punish perpetrators are the reasons why the country is having high rate of violence and wanton killings .

It added that the proliferation of small arms and light weapons in the country exacerbate conflicts and circle of violence in the country.

In his response the president said: “You have made recommendations, one of them you have suggested the setting up of an advisory committee on continuous dialogue. This I also believe in. We always say that even in war situations, finally, people must discuss at the conference table to make sure that people live in peace.

“Force alone, no matter how, cannot bring peace. People must be willingly ready to live in peace.

“We agree with you that even though this committee is today winding down its activities, we need to set up a follow up committee that will concentrate on dialogue so that some of these issues you raised, that committee will be able to anchor them properly working with other departments of government.

“We also noted the suggestion about the victims’ ?support because that is one of the terms of reference; how will government help to see that we can assist. Government is not going to compensate. It is not an issue of compensation but how do we assist people who have suffered to get back to business one or the other.”

He said that government will look into the recommendations see that the right decisions are taken adding that “incidentally, we have security council meeting because this committee was an offshoot of the security council and we will review some aspects of this report and probably set up a team to look at it and work out a planned programme in terms of implementation of the recommendations”.

He thanked the committee concluding the work “though we can’t say that we have won the war. But listening to the address by the chairman, we believe that the document you have submitted will help us with the follow up action. Finally, we will be able to bring to bring the issue of the excesses of the Boko Haram to a close”.

The President further assured Nigerians that this challenging period for the country will pass.

“This is a country that never knew terror. Some countries have been passing through terror for years even before the Boko Haram came on board. But within the short period Boko Haram is operating, globally, it is being classified as one of the most deadly terror groups. It is quite unfortunate that the country will get to this level but with your report and the commitment of the security and intelligent services, we believe that we will bring this situation under reasonable control.”


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