Military hopeful of victory over Boko Haram insurgents in North East
• Says it has liberated Borno border town, 27 communities
• ‘1,400 policemen, civilian fighters for deployment’
The Nigerian military says it remains confident of its victory over the Boko Haram insurgents in North-East. It also said that its six-day joint operations recaptured the Borno border town of Damasak alongside 27 other communities in July.
The Commanding Officer, 145 Battalion of the Nigerian Army, Lt.-Col. Mustapha Jimoh, who spoke while briefing Borno State Governor Kashim Shettima at the 145 Headquarters Battalion, Damasak at the weekend, said the military would work to sustain the success recorded in the fight.
Shettima disclosed that 1,400 policemen and civilian fighters would soon be deployed to secure Damasak and other communities recovered from terrorists.
The commanding officer said: “We commenced the advance from Gubio on August 26. We cleared Bingiddu and recapture Kareto village from Boko Haram activities, which several units have been dislocated from there; but the unit was able to capture the place. After the recapture, a clearance operation was conducted for six days in Kareto area to clear the general axis from insurgents’ activities.
“The MJTF under the Nigerien battalion commenced their advancement from Duji to Damasak while 145 Battalion, 223 Tank Battalion and AHSFG commenced advance from Kareto to Damasak.”
He, however, noted that three days after the recapture, Nigerien troops withdrew from Damasak, leaving the 145 Battalion on ground. He said the troops also ensured that they carry out their clearing military operations.
The operations, according to him, were to save and secure Mobbar Local Council of the state.
Responding, Shettima said the border town has a lot of historical and economic significances to the Borno State government and its people.
The Kumadugu-Yobe River, according to him, flows through Damasak before emptying its waters into Lake Chad, stressing that this part of the state is the economic livewire of northern Borno.
He also spoke on steps to overcome insecurity and other challenges. A team from the Ministry of Water Resources will be deployed to Damasak within a week, he pledged.
He added: “We will mobilise other resources to address the issues of digging trenches around these military locations to safeguard lives and property, while a truck of cement will be delivered to patch up the potholes along the Maiduguri-Gubio-Damasak Road.
“Let the policemen and civilian JTF go and handle those pockets of Boko Haram attacks because sometimes it might be diversionary as they may want to lure our troops out of the major liberated towns to attack.”