23 Feb 2015

Nigerian military working to capture Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau alive

Following successes recorded in the war against Boko Haram in Nigeria’s North-East zone, the Armed Forces have intensified efforts to capture alive, the leader of the insurgent group, Abubakar Shekau.

Already, troops have been placed on alert to apprehend Mr. Shekau, who is said to be desperately trying to escape the warzone.

Military formations engaged in the war have been ordered to do everything in their power to capture Mr. Shekau alive in order for him to face justice; PR Nigeria, an agency that circulates press statements for Nigerian security agencies, quoted a senior military source as saying.

The order to capture the leader of insurgent group alive, PR Nigeria said, is borne out of the fact that on at least two different occasions, the military laid claims to killing Mr. Shekau and even flaunted videos just for the man to resurface and debunk the reports.

Mr. Shekau is, therefore, ordered to be taken alive to ensure that the military is no longer fooled by the gimmick of the insurgents.

Sources also told PR Nigeria that the rumour about Mr. Shekau’s invincibility is one of the factors that have made troops afraid to confront the terrorists.

But with the arrival of sophisticated armaments and the decision of top military brass to lead the onslaught against the terrorists, the troops’ morale has been greatly boosted.

Intelligence sources told PR Nigeria that the reclaiming of key towns in the North-East was due to deployment of new strategies, new equipment, improved discipline, and sincerity of the force fighting the insurgents.

In the past, colonels were said to have led direct attacks in accordance with military tradition but because of the large scale desertions recorded, generals decided to directly lead the war.
“It was even learnt that many of the troops that earlier deserted have returned while others have expressed desire to return to the front,” a source told PR Nigeria.

“With acquisition of new equipment from various sources and the specialized training of the troops on guerrilla warfare, the military indirectly called the bluff of some deceptive western countries who are now trying to save face by claiming to work with our neighbours.

“The effective collaboration and mutual relationship with our neighbours is paying off as they now realise that inactions can pose disasters to their countries too,” the source was quoted as saying.
President Goodluck Jonathan had on Saturday vowed that the Federal Government would regain parts of the country seized by the Boko Haram terror group.

Credit: Ibanga Isine/PremiumTimes

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