Counter Terrorism: Nigeria To Work With Cameroun, Chad and Niger

The Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), Admiral Ola Sa’ad Ibrahim has announced that Nigeria is relating with neighbouring countries like Chad, Cameroon and Niger Republic with a view to fighting terrorism in the northern part of the country.

Admiral Ibrahim urged security forces in the north eastern part of the country to be alert and abide by the rules of engagement.

He made the call during a visit to the headquarters of the Joint Task Force (JTF) in Damaturu, the capital of Yobe state. Admiral Ibrahim had earlier visited the JTF headquarters in Borno state.

The Chief of Defence Staff, on arrival in Damaturu, was received by senior military officers.

Accompanied by the Inspector General of Police, Mr Abubakar Mohammed, Admiral Ibrahim charged officers of the JTF to be law abiding in the discharge of their duties.

The CDS who was visiting the volatile north east part of the country to assess military formations as well as evaluate the security situation in the region, is optimistic that the Federal Government will win the war against terrorism.

The visit of the defence chief to the states is to boost the morale of the officers and men of the Joint Task Force that has been deployed to the north-east geo-political zones of the country.

While congratulating JTF over its gallantry, he thanked them for the selfless service to their fatherland and urged them to sustain the tempo.

Addressing the JTF officers in Damaturu and Maiduguri, the CDS noted that the military has made sacrifices to ensure the incessant cases of terrorists’ attacks within the affected areas are resolved, pointing out that all efforts will be done to ensure success.

He said with the support of the two state governors and those of the residents, the case of the insurgents will soon be a thing of the past as he urged residents of the states to recognise the good works the officers are doing towards the restoration of peace in the area.

Speaking to journalists after the address the CDS said the war against the insurgents has already been won and with the efforts the JTF is making, all these challenges will soon be over.

JTF kills wanted Boko Haram leader and two others in Maiduguri

Security forces in the restive city of Maiduguri, the Borno state capital said it has killed a leader of the Boko Haram sect, one Abdulkareem Ibrahim.

Spokesperson for the Joint Task Force (JTF) in Maiduguri, Lieutenant Colonel Sagir Musa said the slain Abdulkareem Ibrahim, was among the 18 leaders of the Islamic sect declared wanted in a bounty list to members of the public by the JTF  last week.

Musa in a statement said that the Boko Haram leader was killed in a gun battle sequel to a raid on a flash point of the militia in Maiduguri metropolis.

The operation according to the statement was “carried out in conjunction with members of the state security and members of the Police Dog section, which launched a special raid operation along Damboa-Biu road.”

This raid, he claimed led to the killing of the leader and two of his sub commanders.

AK 47 rifles with other arms and ammunition were recovered during the raid.

The spokesman said the slain leader is responsible for the recent spates of assassinations and bomb attacks in Maiduguri.

Outrage as gunmen kill 5 in Maiduguri

Five persons have been killed after unidentified gunmen carried out multiple attacks in Shokwari Ward of Maiduguri, the Borno state capital.

The attackers raided two separate compounds in the area where they slaughtered the victims.

Eyewitness accounts say that the incident occurred around 7.30PM, when three men, armed with AK 47 rifles drove into the area in a tricycle known as Keke Napep.

After entering each of the houses, the gunmen ordered the occupants to come out of their rooms, before selecting their targets.

Gunmen kill 2 Chinese nationals in Borno

Gunmen in an unmarked Golf Volkswagen vehicle on Wednesday killed two Chinese nationals at a road site project in Benishiekh town in Borno state, north east Nigeria.

Benisheikh is 72 kilometres west of Maiduguri, the state capital.

Eyewitnesses said the gunmen ambushed the Chinese engineers working on the Damaturu-Maiduguri dual carriageway and bridge and went away with the SUV belonging to the Chinese engineers after killing them.

Confirming the incident, the Police Commissioner in Borno state, Yuguda Abdullahi, said no arrest had been made in connection with the incident, adding that investigations had commenced.

Northern governors welcome dialogue with Boko Haram

The Northern States Governors Forum (NSGF) has applauded federal government’s acceptance of the offer of negotiation by Islamic sect; Boko Haram, hoping that the initiative will bring in peace, security and tranquility in the country after years of bloodshed.

A statement by the forum made available to Channels Television in Minna, the Niger state capital, stated that “dialogue rather than use of force, would help find a lasting solution to the worsening insecurity of lives and property in the country.”

The 19 northern governors also condemned Friday’s attacks in Maiduguri, Borno State in which a civil war veteran and former member of the Supreme Military Council, General Mamman Shuwa was gunned down.

According to the governors, this is one attack too many, as they urged all terrorists across the country to immediately stop their attacks.

The statement also expressed the forum’s condolences to the families of General Shuwa as well as families of 40 other people that were reportedly killed in similar attack saying, “no grievance can justify such dastardly acts against innocent people.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

30 civilians killed in Maiduguri military raid

The Nigerian Army has allegedly killed 30 civilians during raids in Maiduguri to comb out members of the radical Islamist sect, Boko Haram, witnesses and hospital officials told news agency on Friday.

Three witnesses told Reuters that soldiers from the Joint Task Force (JTF) raided several neighbourhoods in Maiduguri, the Borno State capital late on Thursday and arrested or shot dead dozens of young men.

“More than 30 bodies were brought in by the JTF yesterday and most of them were young men,” a nurse at one Maiduguri hospital Yagana Bukar told Reuters.

The military spokesman in Maiduguri did not respond to requests for comment.

“Yesterday around the Gamboru area, soldiers raided places with an insider who pointed to suspected terrorists and they just killed some of them on the spot and others were taken away,” a civil servant who saw the attacks told Reuters, asking not to be named. He said he saw more than 40 dead bodies.

Amnesty International in a report released earlier on Thursday, accused the JTF of committing human rights abuses in its crackdown against Boko Haram that were fueling the insurgency.

The report said the JTF had carried out executions in the streets and tortured people without bringing any charges against them. Nigerian police said they would investigate the matter.

Meanwhile, Boko Haram had also on Thursday proposed to dialogue with the federal government and is planning a ceasefire before the commencement of the discussion.

 

 

Gunmen kill retired army general in Maiduguri

The joint Task force (JTF) in Maiduguri, the Borno state capital has confirmed that some unknown gunmen have killed Maj. Gen Mamman Shuwa (Rtd) at his Gwange residence in Maiduguri metropolis.

A statement issued by the spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Sagir Musa said the retired general was killed along with one of his guests.

The guest according to the statement died on the spot while the general died on his way to the hospital.

The JTF cordoned off the area in search of the perpetrators of the act and called for the cooperation of the people.

This incident is happening barely 24 hours after the Boko Haram sect outlined three conditions to the federal government towards a ceasefire over killings that has claimed several lives across northern part of the country.

 

Addressing Boko Haram problem is not my responsibility – Borno governor

The governor of Borno State, Kashim Shetima on Thursday said he is more committed to addressing developmental problem in the state while allowing security agencies to deal with the issues of the dreaded sect, Boko Haram.

The governor, who was in the Presidential Villa in Abuja to attend the monthly National Economic Council meeting, was reacting to allegations that some renowned politicians in his state are members of the Boko Haram sect.

Mr Shettima said his focus is to provide the indigenes of Bornu State with good governance while it behoves on the security agencies to unearth the truth concerning Boko Haram.

Boko Haram gives conditions for ceasefire

The fundamentalist group, Boko Haram on has proposed to dialogue with the federal government and is planning a ceasefire before the commencement of the discussion.

In what can be described as a drastic shift from its hard line position, the sect which has been staging insurgent attacks in the North on Thursday offered to cease all hostilities if the federal government will arrest and prosecute the immediate past governor of Borno State, Ali Modu Sheriff.

In a telephone press conference in Maiduguri the Borno State capital on Thursday, Abu Mohammed Ibn Abdulaziz, who claimed to be one of the leaders of the group, told journalists that he was speaking for the sect as he has been directed to do so by the leader of the Jama’atul Ahlis Sunna Liddaawati wal Jihad widely known as the Boko Haram.

“If this former governor is arrested, this thing will end as we are highly offended with what happened three years ago”

He claimed that Mr Sheriff, while in office sent securities to arrest and kill most of their members while practising their religion, insisting that most of them are at the moment languishing in various prisons across the country.

He called for compensation as most of their wives and children have been killed while their properties have also been destroyed.

Saudi Arabia venue

The sect he revealed have adopted Saudi Arabia as the neutral venue for the proposed dialogue with the federal government, saying the choice of Saudi Arabia is because the federal government has failed them in the series of the negotiations.

Mr Abdullaziz said five of its members have been mandated to liaise with five members of Borno Elders to find ways of meeting the federal Government to end the insurgency.

He listed the Nigerian mediators to include Shettima Ali Mongonu, General Muhammadu Buhari (Rtd), Bukar Abba Ibrahim, Gaji Galtimari and Barrister Aisha Wakil and her husband.

“The committee members of the dialogue he stressed include; my humble self, Abu Mohammed Abdullaziz, Sheik Abu Abas, Sheik Ibrahim Yusuf, Sheik Sani Kontagora, and Mamman Nur”

Boko Haram, formed in 2009, claims western education is sinful and proposes that interaction with the western world is forbidden and also opposed to the Muslim establishment and the federal government of Nigeria and therefore wages what the sect calls a war against them.

Since August 2011 the insurgency attacks and counter insurgency is reported to have claimed over 2,000 lives. The sect staged a number of attacks on government establishment by planting bombs and using suicide bomb attacks at strategic locations and churches across the northern region of the country.

Jonathan welcomes dialogue

Meanwhile, the Special Adviser to President Goodluck Jonathan on Media and Publicity, Reuben Abati responding to the development confirmed to Channels Television that the presidency has gotten the offer.

“Yes, I have seen the story in which the Boko Haram is reportedly declaring a ceasefire and the opening of dialogue.”

“I think it is important to restate the position of government in this matter. The Federal Government is committed to peace and security for the benefit of all Nigerians. If what the proposed ceasefire is intended to achieve are the objectives of peace and security, then it is a welcome development.”

“Don’t forget that President Jonathan had made it clear that if the people behind Boko Haram are ready to come forward, and table their grievances, then government will be willing to listen to those grievances. “

“There have been attempts before now, by concerned persons to reach out to the Boko Haram through back channels, in response to government’s call that all efforts should be made to resolve the problem. I suspect that this latest development may be related to that. Definitely, government is determined to ensure peace, peace, and peace, and protect the rule of law, and at the same time, see that justice is done where wrongs have been committed” Mr Abati said.

Boko Haram: Senator under investigation sues Defence Minister, AGF

The Senator representing Borno Central Senatorial Zone, Ahmed Zanna on Wednesday filed a N5 billion suit against the Minister of Defence, the Attorney General of the Federation and the Spokesman of the military Joint Task Force (JTF), Lt. Col. Sagir Musa for alleged libel and mental trauma when the JTF claimed that a Boko Haram Commander, Shuaibu Mohammed Bama was arrested at his residence in Maiduguri.

Senator Ahmed Zanna, representing Borno Central Senatorial district.

Mr Zanna, who is still being investigated by the State Security Service (SSS), deposed to a 19-point affidavit in support of the action in which he insisted that the arrested Boko Haram Commander was not arrested in his house.

In the Writ of Summons filed by his counsel, Gbenga Olagundoye, the Senator is “claiming N5billion jointly and severally against the defendants for libel.”

The writ reads: “On or about the 19th of October 201, the 4th Defendant (Lt.Col. Sagir Musa) acting at all material time in the normal course of his duties as spokesperson of the Joint Task Force at a press conference attended by numerous representatives of the print and electronic media (both local and foreign) maliciously issued a written press statement which was distributed and disseminated to journalists and members of the public following defamatory words concerning the Plaintiff which the defendants knew to be false.

“I am aware of the facts stated above because my attention was drawn to the publication of the press statement in all newspapers, television and radio stations as well as the internet. I read the report in the newspapers and on the internet, viewed the report on all the television stations in Nigeria and listened to the same report on all the radio broadcast on the issue in Nigeria

“Judging from the volume of phone calls and text messages that myself, my aides, my relatives, friends and well-wishers received on the issues, I sincerely believed that practically every Nigerian read the report of the press statement issued by the 4th Defendant

“That the words referred and were understood to refer to me by the following particulars:

“That I am the only serving Senators of the Federal Republic of Nigeria who has a house along Damboa Road GRA Maiduguri

“That I am a member of the National Assembly and the Senator representing Borno Central Senatorial Zone in the Senate

“That the facts in (a) and (b) above are widely known to Nigerians especially my friends, relations and associates and the entire population of Borno State and the Borno Central Senatorial Zone

“That in their natural and ordinary meaning, the said words published concerning me, meant and were understood to mean that:

“I harbored a wanted Boko Haram terror suspect in my house and therefore I am a supporter of the terrorists group Boko Haram

“That the clear innuendo in the words complained of, bore and were understood to bear the meaning which I have just stated by the facts that pleading in the foregoing paragraph by way of innuendo with the following particulars:

“That Boko Haram is a notorious terrorist group operating in Nigeria and who had been held responsible by the public for a series of terrorist activities, bombings and killings of both of civilians as well as military, police and other Para-military personnel

“That it is generally believed by members of the public that the Boko Haram secretly receives materials aid and other support from some members of the society

“That the publication complained of falsely portrayed me as one of the persons who aid and support the Boko Haram in their terrorist activities.”

JTF kills 24 Boko Haram suspects in Maiduguri

The Joint Task Force (JTF) on Operation Restore Order (ORO) said on Tuesday that it shot dead 24 suspected terrorists after repelling Monday night’s multiple attacks in Maiduguri.

A statement made available to news men in Maiduguri by the JTF spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Sagir Musa reveals that the attacks were carried out at different JTF locations of Zanari, Gwange General and Lagos Street of the metropolis.

The statement says the hoodlums used civilian residents to lunch attacks with Rocket Propelled Grenades, Improvised Explosive Devises and gun fire.

Sagir Musa says all the attacks were repelled as one soldier was wounded in the attack without any civilian casualty.

Items recovered according to the statement include, One General Purpose Machine Gun, seven AK47, One FNC Rifle, Two Pistols, four RPG Chargers. One RPG Tube, 24 assorted empty magazines, 950 assorted ammunitions, large quantity of assorted IED Materials and several Bows and Arrows.

The statement warned Maiduguri residents to desist from allowing their residences to be used as launching pads for attack on troops and innocent civilians.

Analyst says vacuum in leadership caused unrest in Borno

A policy analyst, Galtima Liman on Monday said vacuums in political as well as spiritual leadership is greatly responsible for the growing unrest in Borno state, North East Nigeria.

Speaking as a guest on Channels Television’s programme, Sunrise Daily, Mr Liman said the security challenges in Borno state have been building up in the past 30 years.

“Following the local government reforms that have taken away a lot of power of the traditional, spiritual and political leaders, you don’t really have a rallying point for the elders. There’s a big vacuum there, so who is now speaking on behalf of the elders in Borno State? It’s quite a very big challenge,” he said.

Mr Liman spoke on the roles of the All Nigeria Progressive Party, the former Borno State governor, Ali Modu Sheriff and former Head of State, Muhammadu Buhari in the growing security challenges in Borno state and other parts on Northern Nigeria.

Watch the video below for the full interview.