Troops Eliminate Boko Haram Terrorists in Mafa
Troops of 112 Task Force Battalion of Operation Lafiya Dole, supported by operatives of the Civilian Joint Task have killed 7 Boko Haram insurgents in Azaya Kalmari; a village about 50 kilometres away, in the outskirts of Mafa Local Government Area of Borno state.
Troops encountered the fleeing insurgents Friday 22 June 2018 at about12.00 noon while conducting fighting patrol to clear pockets of fleeing Boko Haram insurgents from remote villages around Mafa town. The gallant troops overpowered the insurgents in the ensuing fire fight, killing 7 of them. The troops also recovered two AK 47 rifles , one Ak 56 rifle and 7 rounds of 7.62 mm (special) ammunition.
While conducting the clearance operations along the axis of patrol, the troops successfully cleared Moduhum, Njimtulur, Hayaba Gana, and Hayaba Kura, Hashime, Azaya Kura and Azaya villages. All located in the outskirts of Mafa.
After clearing the initial resistance posed by the insurgents, the troops proceeded to further exploit and clear other surrounding villages including, Koshebe Kanuri, Buramburi Gana, Kashakasha, Ngudda, Kezamari, Kellori, koshiri and Ngwon villages. All located in the remote parts of Mafa Local Government Area.
The troops remain resilient as they continue the fighting patrol and taking the battle to the insurgents in their hideouts.
In another development, participants of the Course 2, Army War College have been charged to develop Leadership capacity to enable them effectively manage human and other other resources in future tasks and assignments. The Theatre Commander Operation Lafiya Dole, Major General Rogers Nicholas, gave the charge when the participants,led by the institution’s Director of Education and team leader, Brigadier General Okpe Ali, paid a visit recently to the Headquarters, Theatre Command Operation Lafiya Dole in Maiduguri. The participants, according to the Institution’s Course Sponsor, Brigadier General Akpan numbered 37, comprising 33 Officers of the Nigerian Army and one participant each from the Nigeria Police Force, the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, the Nigeria Immigration Service and the Federal Road Safety Commission.
Receiving the participants at the Headquarters, Theatre Command, General Nicholas expressed delight that the Army War College introduced visit to the North East theatre of operations into its training curricular for the participants. He noted that the participants’ tour of the operational theatre will enable them access first hand information from military Field Commanders as well as from Commanders of other security agencies.
Speaking further, the Theatre Commander averred that with the passionate support and operational guidance of the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Yusuf Buratai, the Boko Haram insurgents have been greatly depleted and lack the capability to conduct any meaningful attack on troops’ location. He added, that on account of the operational strangulation of the insurgents by troops, the terrorists have callously resorted to safe face by attacking vulnerable and soft targets with Person Borne Improvised Explosive Devices (PBIED) as well as burying IEDs on roads and tracks. The Theatre Commander however noted that troops have responsively mitigated several of the suicide bomb attacks. General Nicholas identified the challenges of the ongoing Counter terrorism and Counter insurgency operations in the north east theatre to include lack of Counter IED equipment, insufficiency of accurate actionable intelligence, impropriety in NGOs’ activities and lack of community resilience on the part of the locals.
In a succinct remark, the team leader, Brigadier General Okpeh Ali stated that the participants ‘ visit to the theatre of operation was in tandem with the mission of the Army War College to educate and train future leaders for the Nigerian Army and other security agencies. While commending the troops of Operation Lafiya Dole for the operational successes so far achieved, Gen Ali noted that since arrival in the theatre, the participants have been exposed to the field of operations and series of lectures from various security agencies, stressing that the participants have become better informed on the operational activities of troops in the theatre.
The participants who had earlier visited troops’ location at Konduga in Konduga Local Government Area of Borno state, were afterwards presented with a lecture titled ” Counter Terrorism and Counter Insurgency Operations in Nigeria : Inter agency Collaboration, the Operation Lafiya Dole Perspective “.
In another development, the Theatre Commander Operation Lafiya Dole , Major General Rogers Nicholas has reiterated that respect for Human Rights and protection of civilians by troops in the ongoing Counter terrorism and Counter insurgency operations in North Eastern Nigeria must be sacrosanct. The Theatre commander made this assertion at the Headquarters, Theatre Command in Maiduguri, when he received Dr Martin Okey Ejidike , a Senior Human Rights Adviser from the Office of the Resident Coordinator, United Nations System in Nigeria.
Speaking further during the meeting with the UN envoy, the Theatre commander pointed out that though the operations in the north east is asymmetrical in nature, there are mechanisms in place to guide troops’ conduct in their host communities, as well as, Rules of Engagement for the execution of their operational mandate. He added that the hierarchy of the military has zero tolerance for violation of any of these provisions, hence the establishment of a standing Military Court Marshall to try erring personnel.
General Nicholas also disclosed during the interaction that suspects are only arrested in the theatre when they are found to have participated directly in acts of terrorism or acted to aid and abet acts tantamount to terrorism.
He noted that the Boko Haram terrorists suspects in custody are pending prosecution which he said, does not fall within the purview of the military. He called on the prosecuting agencies and the Nigerian Judicial system to expedite action on the trial of the suspects to sieve out those acquitted from the convicted. Gen Nicholas also revealed that Boko Haram Terrorists suspects who voluntarily surrendered to troops and are still in custody are currently being processed for onward transfer to Operation Safe Corridor, where they will undergo deradecalization and rehabilitation program. He assured the UN Adviser of unfettered access to the seatings and proceedings of the Military Court Marshall in the theatre, when the court resumes shortly.
In his comments during the meeting, Dr Martin Ejidike, who said he was in the theatre to deliberate on pertinent issues bothering on Human Rights protection, stated further that it was crucial to meet with the Theatre Commander to acquaint the Theatre Command with the developments on the establishment of a UN Human Rights office in the theatre. He added, that the move is also aimed at ensuring that the conduct of ongoing Counter terrorism and Counter insurgency operations in the north east are consistent with Human Rights provisions in Nigeria.
Colonel Onyema Nwachukwu
Deputy Director Public Relations
Theatre Command Operation Lafiya Dole