Military kills suspected foreign Boko Haram commander, 29 others
• Recovers hard currencies, weapons, equipment
• Minister commissions Defence headquarters’ extension
AMID suspicion that some non-Nigerians are assisting the Boko Haram insurgents, the Nigerian military yesterday said it killed 30 insurgents, including one of their commanders suspected to be of foreign descent. It also said it recovered some hard currency, equipment and weapons from the fleeing terrorists.
Meanwhile, the Minister of State for Defence, Augustine Akobunde, yesterday commissioned the five-storey Defence Headquarters’ building extension, which has a basement to house the Joint Operations Centre (JOC).
A statement issued yesterday in Abuja by the Director of Defence Information, Maj.-Gen. Chris Olukolade, said the suspected foreigner, who had foreign currencies on him and believed to be a commander or General of some sort, died along with his gang members in the course of the military operations.
“Thousands of Euro currencies were found on the body of a terrorist commander after troops successfully repelled attack on Mafa towards the border. The terrorist, who is also an Amir by status and believed to be of foreign descent, is among about 30 terrorist fighters who died in the encounter while many others fled with wounds”, he said.
Olukolade, who stated that the military has maintained a sustained offensive on all terrorists’ hideouts to smoke them out and dislodge them out of the country’s territory, also said: “The terrorists also lost a number of weapons and equipment, including the recovered 13 rifles, a machine gun, rocket propelled grenade tubes and several other assorted ammunition. A Toyota Buffalo vehicle was also recovered from the terrorists. Two of their armoured vehicles were also destroyed in the battle.”
Commissioning the building, Akobunde, who stated that the decent office complex “marks a major milestone in solving the numerous administrative challenges confronting the Armed Forces”, said providing a conducive working environment for the officers and men in the service will enhance productivity and efficiency of personnel.
He noted that this was made “in the face of limited funding, logistics and operational challenges”, but the prudent use of resources by the leadership of the military Services is commendable.
On his own, Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), Air Chief Marshal Alex Badeh, said the decision to construct an extension complex for the DHQ was heightened as “the working condition in the offices left much to be desired”
He said the five-floor complex beside a “basement to house the Joint Operations Centre, the fifth floor is the CDS’ penthouse where special visitors to the DHQ could be received and entertained as it has a large area. The other floors have offices, including the Fourth floor where the CDS and his personal members of staff are housed.