Mallam Baba Modu, an 80-year-old father to a Boko Haram commander, popularly called ‘Ba-Ana,’ has called on his son to surrender and embrace peace.
Modu made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Maiduguri, capital of Borno State, yesterday.
The octogenarian said he was unable to persuade his son to abandon the cause and surrender under the Federal Government’s Operation Safe Corridor.
Recounting his ordeal, Modu said his son was conscripted by the insurgents in 2012; at a farm in Dikwa Local Government Area of Borno State.
“I lost hope of meeting my son after his abduction in the past seven years. One day, I met someone who told me that my son was alive and mentioned where I could find him. I was also told he is one of the commanders of the Albarnawi faction of Boko Haram.
“I travelled to the shores of the Lake Chad, to plead with Ba-Ana; to surrender and embrace peace. It took me about one week to get to where I met him.
“When I arrived at the camp, I told them that I am the father of Ba’ana and after series of interrogations, they asked me to wait for him to return from a mission. Ba-Ana returned at night, he marvelled to see me, and when he heard my voice; he told his men that I am his father.
“I pleaded with him for about 30 days; in a bid to convince him to lay down his arms and embrace peace. Regrettably, he did not heed my counsel.
“Ba-Ana confessed that he killed many people and believed that the authorities would not forgive his crimes.
“He also believed that he has committed his life in the cause of God.
“I did not lose hope; I will continue to pray to God to heal his soul and bring him back to me,” Modu said.