Soldiers, Not Boko Haram Fired At My Convoy, Borno Gov Alleges

…threatens to deploy hunters if military can’t secure Baga

Posted  360 Views updated 15 days ago

Governor Zulum

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Borno State Governor, Babagana Zulum, has alleged that soldiers of the Nigerian Army were behind Wednesday’s attack on his convoy in the Baga area of the state, describing the incident as a “complete act of sabotage.” 

 

NEWS FLAKES NG reports that this is just as the governor said if the military could no longer secure Baga, he would mobilise hunters to take over the town and keep it safe.

 

He said that the opening of gunfire on his convoy by the unknown gunmen, after the commander in charge of that sector had assured him that the area had been cleared of the insurgents, was done to cause an “embarrassment.”

 

The governor’s convoy had on Wednesday in Baga come under gun attack by gunmen suspected to be Boko Haram insurgents while on his way to some internally displaced persons camps in Kukawa Local Government area of the state. 

 

After donating 12 patrol vehicles to security operatives in the area, Zulum also inaugurated the reopening of the Monguno-Baga highway after a two-year closure. 

 

Zulum, who had earlier been briefed by the troops of the Nigerian Army that Baga was free of Boko Haram insurgents, returned to ask them what led to the alleged Boko Haram attack on his convoy. 

 

Visibly shaken and angered by the incident, the governor told newsmen, “As far as I’m concerned, no Boko Haram in Baga. That (shooting incident) was a very serious shooting by the Nigerian Armed Forces, who are in Baga. 

 

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“We have over 1,181 soldiers in Baga; 72 officers, 107 solders, 400 soldiers in mile 4 and 1,900 soldiers in Monguno. I see no reason why Boko Haram will still operate in Baga town.


 

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“The troops have been in Mile 4 for over one year, there is complete sabotage, the problem is not with President Buhari, or General Burutai but the command and control structures. There is need to look into command structure.

 

“We have over 80,000 IDPs in Monguno, they cannot continue to depend on NGOs and others for food, we have created opportunity for them to go back to their communities and continue with their business and farming activities.

 

“After Sallah, we will go back to Kukawa. We will give time to the military; but if they will not clear Baga, we will mobilise our hunters and vigilantes to recapture Baga… we can’t continue like this. People have to take their destiny in their hands.”

 

Nigerian Army acting Director of Public Relations, Sagir Musa, in his reaction, said details of the incident were still sketchy and efforts were ongoing to comb the scene of the attack.

 

He said, “An investigation is also in progress to identify the circumstances that led to the attack.  

 

“Regrettably, this is an isolated and most unfortunate incident that occurred in a territory where normalcy has since been restored with socio-economic activities picking up. The Nigerian army wants to reassure the general public that this will be interrogated with a view to forestalling future recurrence.”  

 

In the past few months, Governor Zulum and the military have disagreed over certain issues regarding operations against the insurgents. 

 

The governor, in January, accused soldiers of extorting road users in some parts of the state.

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