A splinter group of the Islamist extremist group, Boko Haram, has, again assured it was prepared for talks with the Nigerian government to end more than three years of its bloody campaign.
The group, led by Abdulaziz Ibn Adam, said on Saturday it had realized its goals were not achievable through violence.
Mr. Ibn Adam said his group will go after those who continued to engage in violent campaign since they had been warned severally.
He said that the leader of the sect, Abubabak Shekau, was behind the cease fire agreement and hence all members must abide or face sanctions.
“You will recall that we announced a cease fire last month as a precondition for talks with government. But sadly after a few days of respite, violent began again in the country,” Mr. Ibn Adam was quoted by the News Agency of Nigeria as saying.
He said the group was not responsible for the renewed violence in some parts of Borno state.
“Those currently engaged in this violence are not our people because our people are obedient to their leaders. Since the leadership has asked them to cease fire, they won’t continue with violence,” he said.
Mr. Ibn Adam made the declaration at a news conference in Maiduguri, the Borno state capital, and the hotbed of the deadly insurgency launched by the group in 2009.
Since the violence started, more than 1000 people have been killed in gun and bomb attacks claimed by Boko Haram, Human Right groups say.
The Ibn Adam-led group’s earlier ceasefire announcement in January, a call cautiously welcomed by the government, was soon denounced by another faction of Boko Haram which distributed leaflets rejecting dialogue.
Violence have continued, although on a relatively lower scale in Borno and Yobe states, residents say, an indication the supposed ceasefire may have been a fluke afterall.
In the past two weeks, gunmen suspected of being members of the group have killed 12 health workers in Kano and Yobe states.