Arms For Volunteers: Irabor Not Sure Army Arms CJTF

Commander, Multinational Joint Task Force, Major-General Lucky Irabor

 

The Commander, Multinational Joint Task Force, Major-General Lucky Irabor on Monday expressed uncertainty whether or not the military arms the Civilian Joint Task Force (CJTF).

Irabor on Channels Television Breakfast Show, Sunrise Daily said he is only aware that the CJTF carry arms like vigilantes and local hunters.

“I am not sure if the Nigerian military is part of those arming the Civilian Joint Task Force (CJTF). I am aware that they (CJTF) carry arms just like the vigilantes and the hunters carry arms,” he said.

He added that the CJTF plays a crucial role in assisting the military win the war against terrorism in the troubled north-east.

“In fact, the Civilian Joint Task Force as far as I know have been served in the Lafiya Dole for a very long time, many of them also hunters.

“For the national forces, Operation Lafiya Dole has a lot of support with the CJTF. We the Multinational Joint Task Force do not deal with the CJTF.”

While acknowledging the support received from the Borno State Government to the military, the Commander also praised the efforts of the CJTF in extending information.

Upon assuming office last year November, the Commander restated his commitment in consolidating on the fight against the insurgency.

In doing that, he calls for a collaboration with troops from Chad, Niger, Cameroon, Benin Republic respectively.

Irabor also explained that the newly introduced military offensive, Operation Ami Faka would last for 90 days. The exercise comprises soldiers from neighbouring countries.

With its base in Chad, Nigeria plays a leading role in the terrorism war having felt the series of attacks by the outlawed terrorist network.

The military has repeatedly assured Nigerians that Boko Haram would be defeated.

Boko Haram Leader, Shekau Reappears In Video

Boko Haram Leader, Shekau Reappears In VideoBoko Haram Leader, Abubakar Shekau, has reportedly reappeared in a new video in which he dismisses claims that many of his members have been killed.

According to the AFP, Shekau released a 27-minute video in which he spoke for about 20 minutes in Hausa and Kanuri, criticising the countries in the Lake Chad area fighting the group under the Multinational Joint Task Force.

He is said to have singled out Cameroon which reportedly announced on Wednesday that its soldiers killed about 60 Boko Haram fighters and arrested scores of others, while freeing about 5000 hostages.

Speaking in the video, Shekau reportedly described the claim as a lie, insisting that his so-called caliphate was ‘running smoothly’.

The militant leader also claimed responsibility for the suicide bombings recorded in Northeast Nigeria in recent time, including the last attack in Maiduguri on Wednesday, which killed the four suicide bombers and two other people.

In December 2016, he released a video in which he also denounced the announcement by the Nigerian Military that troops had flushed out his fighters from their stronghold in Sambisa forest in northern Borno State.

UN Security Council Urges Improved Humanitarian Aid In Northeast

Maiduguri, United NationsThe United Nations Security Council has asked the humanitarian community to step up operations in Northeast Nigeria.

A team from the Council made the call on Sunday during a visit to Maiduguri, the Borno State capital to obtain first-hand information on the ongoing crisis in the northeast.

Head of the delegation, Ambassador Mathew Rycroft, said the council was shocked by the number of people affected by the Boko Haram insurgency.

He added that the people who have suffered in the hands of the terrorists are suffering a second time by the effect the humanitarian crisis is having on them.

Prior to arriving at the Borno State capital, the delegation had visited Cameroon, Chad and Niger Republic.

In an earlier visit to the headquarters of the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) in Chad, Ambassador Rycroft had offered partnership to the MNJTF.

He stated the council’s satisfaction with the achievements of the task force, as the delegation was given a detailed brief on the activities of the MNJTF.

Rycroft noted that with the role being played by the force, there is evidence that mandates would be achieved.

The visits, together with the visit to Nigeria, would help the Council obtain a better overview of the crucial security and social issues facing the Lake Chad region.

MNJFT: Over 1,300 Boko Haram Members Surrendered In January

MNJTF Says Over 1,300 Boko Haram terrorists surrenderedThe Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) says at least 1,300 members of the Boko Haram terrorist group voluntarily surrendered in January.

The Head of Missions of the task force, Mr Sanusi Abdullahi, announced this at a meeting of Defense Chiefs from the Lake Chad Basin Authority.

He asked the governments of the affected countries to sustain efforts to ensure peace and stability in the region.

The meeting, which held on Friday in Abuja, was attended by Defense Chiefs from Chad, Cameroon, Niger, Nigeria and Benin.

For the past few days, they have been deliberating on how to improve security in the Lake Chad region through multilateral cooperation.

In spite of the remarkable efforts made in curtailing the activities of Boko Haram insurgents and other security threats, Nigeria’s Defence Minister, Mansur Dan Ali, said peace building and rehabilitation should be given priority.

High point of the meeting was the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding among participating countries.

The defense chiefs expressed optimism that the development would translate into peace and stability in the region.

Dan-Ali Solicits Chadian President’s Support For MNJTF

Idriss Deby, Mansur Dan-Ali, MNJTFThe Minister of Defence, Mansur Dan-Ali, has urged President Idris Deby of Chad to use his good office as African Union Chairman to support the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF).

Mr Dan-Ali also asked President Deby to call on countries, organisations and individuals that pledge financial and material support to the Lake Chad Basin Commission (LCBC) to fulfil their promises, to enable the task force execute its mandate of ending the activities of Boko Haram in the region effectively.

He made the appeal on Wednesday when he led a team of Ministers of Defence and Chiefs of Defence Staff from troops-contributing countries of MNJTF which include Nigeria, Niger, Chad, Cameroun and Benin Republic, to visit the Chadian leader after LCBC meeting in Njamena.

The Nigerian Defence Minister also appealed to African leaders to provide a better means of livelihood for their people, to prevent the recruitment of youths into terrorist groups across the region.

In his response, President Deby assured the visiting Ministers and Chiefs of Defence Staff of the support of all LCBC Presidents to the MNJTF operations and promised to impress on the donors to fulfil their promise.

He also paid tribute to the MNJTF soldiers and urged them to rid the region of Boko Haram terrorists as soon as possible.

Mr Dan-Ali’s appeal was made public in a statement by his spokesman, Colonel Tukur Gusau.

240 Boko Haram Terrorists Surrender to MNJTF

240 Boko Haram Terrorists Surrender to MNJTFA total of 240 Boko Haram terrorists have surrendered to the Multinational Joint Task Force, some of them with arms and ammunition.

This is according to Chief Military Public Information Officer, Colonel Muhammad Dole, in a statement made available to the media.

The recent wave of mass defection took place in Sector 2 Area of Responsibility (AOR) Bagasola in Chad.

According to the statement: “The firepower of the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) ground troops and joint Air operation during the Operation GAMA AIKI forced a massive defection of remnants of the Boko Haram Terrorists (BHT).

“Sustained offensive operations and blockage of logistics supply routes made the terrorists’ locations untenable; as a result, Boko Haram terrorists and their families abandoned their locations and surrendered with their arms to the nearest locations of the ground forces in the operation areas.”

Colonel Dole stated that they are being profiled and camped in Bagasola. According to him, this brings the total number of Boko Haram terrorists who have surrendered to MNJTF troops in Sector 2 to 464.

The Commander MNJTF, Major-General Lamidi Adeosun, addressed the repentant terrorists and their families during his operational visit to Sector 2 AOR.

The Commander commended the leaders of the ex-Boko Haram terrorists for their courage and taking the right decision to abandon terrorism and insurgency for normal life.

He assured them of safety and good care as long as they remain in the camps.

He also urged them to encourage their colleagues in the bush to stop fighting and join them in the camps.

“This peaceful disarming and profiling of the ex-BHT by the MNJTF forces, clearly demonstrated extent of professionalism and adherence to International Humanitarian Laws and Laws of Armed Conflict in combat operations,” he added.

The Commander of MNJTF donated cash for purchase of two cows and food stuff for each of the two groups for the welfare and upkeep of the ex-militants and their families.

While addressing a team of International Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) operating in the camps, the Commander praised their commitment and sacrifice in discharging their humanitarian duties.

He implored them to mobilise more resources and manpower, as more terrorists are expected to defect and join their colleagues in the camps.

The ex-BHT (Boko Haram terrorists) are expected to receive training in different skills and small businesses as scheduled by government agencies and NGOs.

Navy Commences Counter Insurgence Operations In Lake Chad

Navy, counter-insurgence, lake chadThe Nigerian Navy has commenced full operations on the Nigerian side of the general Lake Chad, following the deployment of Marine troops to the area.

This is in line with the presidential directives to give a boost to the War Against Insurgents in Northeast Nigeria.

Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ibok-Ete Ibas, has been interacting with commanders in the newly established area of Naval operations, to appraise the situation on ground.

He seeks to join forces with the ground and air troops as well as other key stakeholders in order to speed up the post conflict healing process in the area.

They are currently brainstorming on how to achieve synergy and smooth running of the new operational base.

Boko Haram Stronghold

Boko HaramNorthern Borno is a notorious stronghold of the Boko haram insurgents, carrying out trans-border operations after sacking the fishing town of Baga.

The Lake Chad area falls under Baga, a border local government in Northern Borno State.

Three years after a deadly massacre of an estimated 2,000 residents, Baga is still a ghost town, deserted by civilians and now home to the Multinational Joint Task Force fighters.

The Borno State Deputy Governor, Usman Durkwa among other government officials, expressed gratitude over the presidential directives.

As Baga has the biggest fish market in the region and serves as an economic hub for the state, there are hopes that a total liberation and revival of the area will pave way for a continuation of the suspended oil exploration around the lake Chad area.

U.S/ UN Support

Earlier in August, the United States government offered over $37 million for humanitarian assistance of victims of the Lake Chad Basin conflict.

Also in September, the UN Regional Humanitarian Coordinator, Toby Lanzer, said at least $559 million would be needed in the next four months to ease the crisis in Nigeria, Niger, Cameroon and Chad.

Navy, Counter-terrorism, Lake chad

This was after confirming that at least nine Million people were in urgent need of aid in Nigeria’s northeast and neighbouring countries.

Furthermore, more than six million people were considered to be “severely food insecure” with 568,000 children acutely malnourished.

“Save Lake Chad”

President Buhari had also called on wealthy countries to save Nigeria, and other countries of the Lake Chad Basin as they lacked the billions of dollars required to channel water from the Congo Basin into the lake.

This was in order to check its rapid depletion.

Navy, Counter-terrorism, Lake chadHe therefore warned that the failure to regenerate the Lake Chad will lead to another round of migration by the people living in the areas.

This was one of the topics presented by Buhari at the recently concluded United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) which took place in New York.

MNJTF Defence Chiefs Pledge To Flush Out Boko Haram

MNJTF, Boko Haram, Defence ChiefsDefence chiefs of the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF), have resolved to intensify efforts towards clearing the remnants of Boko Haram terrorists around the Lake Chad Basin region.

The Council of Defence Chief of the MNJTF troop contributing countries reached the decision at the end of its special session held in Niger Republic.

A statement by the MNJTF spokesman, Colonel Muhammad Dole, said the session was held to reappraise the special joint operation around the Lake Chad Basin tagged ‘Operation Ganman Aiki’.

According to Colonel Dole, the council has made a commitment to pool resources to finally neutralise the menace of Boko Haram terrorists in the region.

The statement quoted the Chairman of the council and Chief of Defence Staff of Nigerien Armed Forces, General Seyni Garba, as saying “It is apparent that despite the limited capability of the Boko Haram Terrorists (BHT), they still pose serious security threats in the region.

“it is absolutely necessary to pull resources together to flush out the remnant of the terrorists”.

The council commended both the air and ground forces for their professional conduct in the frontlines.

U.S. Pledges $40 Million To Countries Affected By Boko Haram

forexThe United States on Tuesday pledged $40 million in humanitarian assistance to countries bordering Lake Chad, fighting Islamist militant group Boko Haram.

The U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Samantha Power, said the money is to help about seven million people affected by the insurgent group that has killed around 15,000 people.

Power was in the capital of Cameroon, Yaounde, and met President Paul Biya and attended a ceremony to burn 2,000 tusks in a bid to end elephant poaching. The trip includes visits to Chad and Nigeria.

“We discussed the monstrous threat posed by Boko Haram and we agreed, and he was very forceful on this point, that the military response alone could not succeed in defeating Boko Haram in the long-term,” she said of her meeting with Biya.

Respect for human rights, good governance, economic and forest development and a focus on civil society were essential components of the campaign, she said.

Power has been scheduled to visit the region’s Multinational Joint Task Force, which is staffed with troops from Cameroon, Nigeria, Chad, Niger and Benin.

Power also called for financial support from the international community to aid the development of areas battered by Boko Haram.

It takes total U.S. aid to the sub-region since 2014 to $237 million, she said.

Nigeria, Cameroon Troops Clear More Boko Haram Hideouts

soldiers and officersTroops of 152 and 155 Task Force Battalions at Operation Lafiya Dole in conjunction with troops of Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) from Cameroon, have conducted a massive joint clearance operation of suspected Boko Haram terrorists along Nigeria-Cameroon borders.

The unprecedented clearance operation conducted on Monday swept through over 10 suspected Boko Haram terrorists hideouts along the border.

In the operation, 22 terrorists were killed while three Ameers (commanders) were arrested. Abducted persons were also rescued.

A statement by the Army spokesman, Colonel Sani Usman, said during the operation, the troops cleared Nbaga, Bula, Dabube, Ybiri, Greya and Suduwa towns and other adjoining settlements.

The towns and settlements were occupied by suspected fleeing Boko Haram terrorists, who escaped from villages previously cleared by troops of the Nigerian Army.

The apprehended terrorists’ commanders include Lawal Abba, Mallam Hisna and Mallam Gana in Shatte, Bulla Jaja and Bula Burra towns.

In the operation, which Colonel Usman described as a huge success, the troops also rescued 1,275 persons held hostage by the terrorists.

They are being administered to and screened by 152 Taskforce Battalion pending onward movement to Internally Displaced Persons’ camp.

Troops Rescue 275 Boko Haram Hostages In Borno

Troops - Boko Haram - Borno Troops have rescued 275 persons held hostage by the Boko Haram terrorists during a mop-up operation in Borno State, northeast Nigeria.

The troops of 152 Task Force Battalion in conjunction with troops of Sector 1 of Multinational Joint Task Force made the feat during a clearance operation in suspected hideouts of the dreaded terrorists.

A statement by the Acting Director of the Nigerian Army Public Relations, Colonel Sani Usman, said that one of the rescued persons gave birth to a baby boy shortly after their liberation. He said that both mother and child were doing fine.

According to the statement, the soldiers cleared terrorists in Madawaya, Jere, Kardile, Koujili, Ngenere and Maksamari, as well as Douse, Bembem, Zombulum and Taraji villages while they recovered several vehicles and motorcycles.

In addition, the troops recovered an AK-47 rifle, four fully loaded magazines with 7.62mm ammunition, two power generating sets, welding machines, assorted batteries and solar panels.

The gallant soldiers also recovered drums of beans and other grains as well as bandolier while they discovered and destroyed an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) – making factory at Bula Umara.

The troops have continued with their clearance operations to other suspected hideouts of the Boko Haram sects in their areas of operations.

Army Chief Meets Joint Task Force Troops In Baga 

Army ChiefThe Chief of Army Staff,  Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai, has visited Sector 3 of the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) stationed in Baga area of Borno State.

The Army Chief’s visit is the first since Baga became the Sector 3 headquarters of the force.

Gen. Buratai was in the theatre of operation to obtain firsthand information on the welfare of troops and confidence building.

In 2015, an unspecified number of soldiers attached to the 118 and 157 Battalion in Baga were killed after they came under intense attack from Boko Haram terrorists in Gudunbali.

The Army Chief has also been consulting with the Borno Elders Forum.

This group had requested that the previous administration should grant amnesty to terrorists, as well as withdraw the military Joint Task Force from Maiduguri and other areas in the state, over alleged human rights abuses.