Governor Babagana Zulum of Borno says the state government is yet to account for the whereabouts of 10 per cent of its population following the 12-year old insurgency in the North-East.
He said that over 100,000 indigenes of the state have been killed since the outbreak of the insurgency.
Zulum disclosed this to State House correspondents yesterday after meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
According to him, he discussed the report of the surrendering of insurgents with the president, saying he did not see any reason why those who surrendered should be rejected.
The governor stated that already 2,600 bandits including their wives and children have surrendered and are in the custody of the state.
He said among those that surrendered were innocent people who were forcefully conscripted to join the Boko Haram sect, while some are teenagers.
The governor, who said that he had been attacked by the insurgents about 50 times, also promised to support the victims of the insurgents, those that their parents were killed.
He said, “I came to brief Mr President over the ongoing surrender by insurgents. I think, to me, and the greater majority of people of Borno State, this is a very good development.
“In the last 12 years thousands of lives were lost, people have completely lost their means of livelihood. We have a total number of over 50,000 orphans and widows, these are official figures, the unofficial figures are more than this, and we were able to cultivate not more than three percent of our total arable land because of the insurgency and right now, the whereabouts of not less than 10 percent of people of Borno State is not known to all of us at all.
“This is a very serious matter and I think the report of the surrendering of the insurgents, to me in particular and to the greater people of Borno State, is a very welcomed development. Unless we want to continue with an endless war, I see no reason why we shall reject those that are willing to surrender.