Where Presidency Says Other Chibok Girls May Be, As Boko Haram Last Camp Falls

femi adesina on Chibok girlsThe last camp of Boko Haram insurgents within Sambisa forest called camp zero may have fallen, but it remains to be known where the remaining girls abducted from Chibok in Nigeria’s Borno State are.

It is a major breakthrough and seen as the last straw on the Islamic group’s stronghold in northeast Nigeria, but it leaves questions about the whereabouts of the remaining abducted Chibok girls taken from their school’s dormitory on April 14, 2014.

Over 200 girls were abducted but less than 70 of them have been rescued since then.

The remaining girls are thought to be held in Sambisa forest, but the Presidency thinks there are chances they were not held in the forest after all.

After a statement by President Muhammadu Buhari announced the fall of ‘camp zero’, a spokesman for the President, Mr Femi Adesina, told Channels Television that “there is no single place which we can say is the bulwark of the Boko Haram”.

“You know their last stand was within Sambisa forest which they had occupied for some time.

“The military entered into it fully, a while back, and they gave the target that by the end of December they wanted to be done with the issue of insurgency and on Thursday, December 22, camp zero fell and that is very significant”.

He said the news was brought to the President by the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai.

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President Muhammadu Buhari in October received 21 of the Chibok girls released by their abductors

A statement from the presidency had said that members of Boko Haram group were on the run, a situation critics had said was of concern, as the terrorists could run to other states in Nigeria, creating more security issues.

Hidden Away In Different Parts

The president’s spokesman, however, dismissed claims that it could pose security threats, saying that a good number of the terrorists had been killed.

“Those who naturally are alive and escaped would be scattered in different places. Some would likely have gone out of the country and some would have infiltrated into camps and cities.

“That is why the President said we must not let down our guards. He has appealed to Nigerians to blow the whistle against anyone they suspect,” he stated.

Mr Adesina expressed optimism that people in the northeast could sleep with their eyes closed.

He said that what had happened in 2016 was a mop-up process, claiming that the terrorists group had been thoroughly decimated in 2015.

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There were speculations that the Chibok girls were held in Sambisa forest

On why more Chibok girls were not rescued as camp zero falls, he said: “Naturally, as the soldiers advanced into Sambisa, they were on the lookout for the girls, but it turned out that till that last camp fell, they did not see any of them. What it therefore means is that may be the girls were not being kept in the forest.

“It is likely they had been spirited out and hidden away in different parts either within or outside the country”.

Not less than 14 camps of the terrorists were destroyed within the forest that was a safe haven for the group that has in the past seven years terrorised communities in Nigeria’s northeast and communities of neighbouring countries along the northeast border.

In the last phase of the mop-up operations, the military said it rescued 1,180 persons.

The Presidency did not say what efforts would be made to free the remaining girls, but Boko Haram had, days after they were taken, said they have been married off.

The last batch of 21 girls among the abducted Chibok girls rescued in October will be in Chibok, their ancestral home for the first time since their abduction to join their families and friends in celebrating the 2016 Christmas.

The girls, who have now become international figures, arrived Yola International Airport secretly and under tight security were received by the Adamawa State Governor, Senator Mohammed Jibrilla.

Buhari Decorates War Heroes In Yola

Muhammadu-Buhari-in-Yola President Muhammadu Buhari on Friday decorated brave war heroes with a Purple Heart medal, an award given to troops who fought for six months under ‘Operation Lafiya Dole’.

The decoration of the soldiers took place in Yola, during President Buhari’s visit to the State.

President Buhari, on arrival, was received at the Yola International Airport by the Governor of Adamawa State, Senator Mohammad Umaru Jibrilla, the Speaker of the House of Representatives Yakubu Dogara and other dignitaries including a former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar.

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President Muhammadu Buhari and the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General General Tukur Buratai, before the medals were handed out to the soldiers

The President inspected a guard of honour by the 23rd Armoured Brigade of the Nigeria Army after which he was invited by the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General Tukur Buratai, to present the medals to the wounded soldiers.

After decorating the soldiers with the medals, President Buhari expressed his confidence on their ability to end the activities of Boko Haram terrorists in the oil-rich nation’s north-east.

Visit To IDPs Camp In Yola

After the medal presentation, the President visited the Malkohi Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camp in Yola in the southern part of Adamawa State.

He told the IDPs that the Boko Haram terrorists do not represent any religion, stressing that the terror group is set to disintegrate Nigeria.

President Buhari described the condition of the IDPs as unfortunate and called on them to remain calm, as the government was working towards returning them to their homes.

The President said: “The government is proactive about rebuilding your Schools, hospitals and homes”.

The chairman of IDPs in Malkohi IDPs camp, Mr Nicholas Samuel, thanked the Federal and State governments for coming to their aid and appealed to the President to facilitate their return to their homes.

Governor Jibrilla had earlier told the President that one of the major concerns of the State government was the welfare and wellbeing of the displaced persons.

The Director General of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), Mr Sani Sidi, told the President that at present, the camp had 80 pregnant women and 175 unaccompanied children.

FG may fly Suntai abroad for treatment

President Goodluck Jonathan says the federal government has put arrangements in place to fly the governor of Taraba state Alhaji Danbaba Suntai abroad for treatment if it becomes necessary.

Doctor Jonathan was speaking to Muslim faithful who came to pay him the Sallah homage in the Presidential Villa. He said that the governor is stable and that he will first be brought to the National Hospital in Abuja for treatment before any other action will be taken.

The Governor escaped death on Thursday after a plane he was flying crashed in Yola, the Adamawa State capital.

The governor, his aide-de-camp and chief security officer, who were also in the plane that took off from Jalingo, the Taraba State capital, and three others, were seriously injured.

Mr Suntai, who graduated as a pilot from the Aviation College in Zaria last year, was piloting the crashed plane. This would be the second time he is surviving a plane crash

The plane, a Cessna 208, 5N-BMJ, owned by the state government, crashed at about 7.45 pm, near the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) Depot, on the outskirts of Yola.

The governor, who was brought in unconscious, was first taken to Yola Specialist Hospital for treatment, but was later, moved to the better-equipped Federal Medical Centre, Yola.

A statement from the Ministry of Aviation said the aircraft had six persons, including the crew on board when it crashed.

It said the aircraft departed Jalingo for Yola and reported contact with the Yola control tower, but shortly before it landed, the pilot lost contact with the control tower, while efforts to radio the aircraft failed.