- Let me emphasize that the time frame given is only a guideline and it’s exigencies of multiple operations across advises a modification. The federal government will not hesitate to do so in order to address the flash points that are rearing their heads in this country…The Army must therefore develop new strategies to address current security challenges facing the country and ensure total elimination of insurgents
President Muhammadu Buhari has said the mandate he handed to the military to annihilate Boko Haram insurgency in the North-East region by the end of December this year is not feasible. The President said the time frame was only meant to be a guideline to the military.
Buhari made the disclosure yesterday while declaring open the Annual Chief of Army Staff conference holding in Dutse, Jigawa State.
According to President Buhari, who was represented by the Chief of Defence Staff, CDS, General Gabriel Olonisakin, government will modify the December deadline, stressing that new operational exigencies required a modification of the December deadline so as to end the Boko Haram menace.
He said, “Let me emphasise that the time frame given is only a guideline and it’s exigencies of multiple operations across advises a modification. The federal government will not hesitate to do so in order to address the flash points that are rearing their heads in this country. The Army must therefore develop new strategies to address current security challenges facing the country and ensure total elimination of insurgents.”
Already, the military has commenced deep operations into the Sambisa forest believed to be the remaining stronghold of Boko Haram, as various units of the army had advanced deep into the forest, clearing most of the camps and rescuing persons held captive, arresting some terrorists and destroying their weapons and equipment.
Acting Director, Army Public Relations, Colonel Sani Usman, said in a statement that the advancing army troops, supported by the Nigerian Air Force, NAF were able to clear and destroy Boko Haram terrorists camps at Shuari, Adembe, Yerimari Kura,Yerimari Gana, Gonin Kurmi, Kore, Mainya Kore and Lopere.
According to the army spokesman, the multi-barrel rocket launcher regiment had destroyed the terrorists’ camps at Dure, Dure Kore, Jokwa as well as several other camps.
“The troops recovered foodstuff, motorcycles, flags, Improvised Explosive Devices, IED materials and military uniforms. Among other discoveries were the terrorists’ tunnels, weapons and equipment,” he stated.
According to him, the soldiers also recovered 2,000 cattle rustled from various persons over time and rescued women and children held captives. He said, while the animals had been moved to Kanwuri, the rescued persons were evacuated and are being given necessary support and assistance.
“During the encounter with the terrorists at Yerimari Gana, a number of Boko Haram terrorists were killed and some suspected terrorists were arrested and are being interrogated. However, a soldier sustained gunshot wounds and fracture on the leg,” Colonel Usman disclosed.
He said the Nefari terrorist camp was successfully cleared and troops had continued their advance while a blocking force had been deployed to prevent infiltration and possible escape by the terrorists.
The army spokesman said three soldiers died while an officer and two other soldiers were wounded in action during another encounter with the terrorists along the axis of advance.
Troops also destroyed Boko Haram camps in Bulagaije and Disa, Gwoza Local Government Area of Borno State and recovered motorcycles, dane guns and ammunitions, according to the statement.