Maiduguri — Members of the Borno Elders Forum (BEF) under the leadership of Alhaji Shettima Ali Monguno yesterday met in Maiduguri and expressed pleasure over the announcement of ceasefire by members of the Jama'atu Ahlis Sunnah Lidda'awati Wal Jihad, also known as Boko Haram and called on the federal government to sustain the peace process.
The meeting which took place at the residence of Monguno had in attendance, Brigadier General (Rtd) Abba Kyari, Ambassador Gaji Galtimari, Alhaji Umar Abba Shuwa, Alhaji Ali Kidaji, Alhaji Kyari Sandabe, Imam Idain of Borno Adam Asil Ibn Alsulusiyya, Ambassador Ahmad Yusufari, Alhaji Garba Satomi, DIG (Rtd) Abdullahi Shettima, Dr. Bulama Mali Gubio, Alhaji Gambo Gubio, Alhaji Zanna Lamin Mamadi, AIG (Rtd) Mukhtar Alkali and Alhaji Ibrahim Abba Gubio.
In a speech which was read by Dr. Bulama Mali Gubio, who is a retired head of service in Borno State, the elders described the ceasefire as a long awaited gesture which should receive the support and appreciation of all peace loving people.
"Our people have suffered enough. Enormous losses in terms of human lives, property and institutional set ups have occurred. We are therefore calling on all and sundry to encourage the peace process. We advise that cynicism and doubts should be set aside and positive attitude should be shown to encourage the sect to maintain this positive disposition.
"On the part of the federal government of Nigeria, we expect that they should embrace this positive opening and capitalize on it in order to open wider space for sustainable peace.
"The idea of whether it is a faction (that declared the ceasefire) or not should be discarded so that we can make progress. In this direction, we are calling on the government to without any delay commence the process of dialogue," the elders said.