Boko Haram terrorist group has been contained and pushed into the remote Islands on the Lake Chad basin, the Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Tukur Buratai, has said.
This is even as the Chief of the Air Staff (CAS), Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, on Monday announced that the Air Force has taken delivery of two Agusta 109 power attack helicopters to boost the fight against insurgency.
Buratai said the development followed the recent renewed Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) offensive against the insurgent group in Northern Borno and border areas.
The Army Chief, who was represented by Maj.-Gen. Lamidi Adeosun, the Chief of Training and Operations, disclosed this during an interview with newsmen at Monguno, north of Borno State, after celebrating the Easter with troops.
He said, “You will discover that the Boko Haram terrorists are now lurking around the borders, especially the dangerous and inaccessible areas of the Tumbun and Islands (of Lake Chad).
“And the best way to handle them is to have concentration of forces.”
According to Buratai, the coming of the Chadians and equipment concentration in northern Borno had given a boost to troops fighting the terrorist.
On his part, Air Marshal Abubakar, said the helicopters are currently being assembled and would be inducted during the forthcoming 55th anniversary of the Air Force.
In a statement through the Air Force spokesman, Air Commodore Ibikunle Daramola, the CAS broke the news to front line troops in Maiduguri while celebrating Easter.
“The luncheon, which is in keeping with the CAS’ tradition of celebrating festive periods with frontline troops, afforded him the opportunity to interact with the troops in an informal setting to appreciate them for their sacrifices in the fight against insurgency, thereby boosting their morale while also filling the void created by their inability to celebrate the season with their families,” the statement said.
He added that Air Marshal Abubakar expressed delight to be in Maiduguri and commended the resilience and commitment of the troops in ensuring that Nigeria and Nigerians are safe.
“He equally commended the ATF Commander for the various value adding welfare projects that had been executed to enhance the wellbeing of personnel.
“The CAS reminded the personnel that so much was at stake in the fight to rid the Nation of insurgents, terrorists, armed bandits and other criminal elements.
“Accordingly, he urged them to remain resolute while intensifying their efforts and maintaining continuous vigilance to defend the liberties and values Nigerians hold so dear.
“Air Marshal Abubakar seized the opportunity to thank the government and people of Borno State as well as the Shehu of Borno and other traditional rulers in the State for their continued support to the NAF through the ATF OPLD.
“He equally appreciated President Muhammadu Buhari for his unflinching support to the NAF by ensuring the enabling environment and providing the necessary resources for the Service to perform its assigned duties,” the statement further disclosed.