Nigeria: Shock As DailyTrust-Army Reveal Boko Haram Still Controls 3 Local Governments

Re: Fight against terror: Troops recapture 26 out of 29 LGs – DailyTrust

The above-named report on the Boko Haram insurgency appeared on the Daily Trust Newspaper of today, Sunday (10/07/2016) and Nigerians especially social media activists were shocked to learn that the murderous Boko Haram rag-tag hooligans are still holding at least three (3) Local Government Areas of Borno state despite the declaration of the Nigerian President Buhari that all Nigerian territories had been liberated from BokoHaram.

Various reactions of shock and disappointment appeared on various social media platforms that can be captured by the comment of Aliyu Smith Almusawi, a rising blogger and public affairs commentator when he said:

“The shocking revelations by today’s Daily Trust that Boko Haram are still holding onto a vast stretch of lands in the Northeast, have brought to lights how clueless, and deceptive Buhari and his blood-sucking sidekick, Burutai are. They continue to deceive gullible Nigerians that Boko Haram do not control any inch of the Nigerian soil, but the military success has not put an end to the humanitarian crises in the region. Hundreds of children are dying every week of starvation, but the tyrant ruler is busy flattering his blind followers with motley of fables and phantom achievements. What a travesty of good governance.”

Two months ago, Nigerian Buhari had told the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Mr. Ban Ki Moon, that the Boko Haram terrorist group was no longer “holding any territory as we speak”. Mr. Buhari, who was speaking on the sidelines of the World Future Energy Summit in the UAE, said Nigerian Armed Forces in collaboration with the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNTJF) had driven the terrorist group from Nigerian territory into “fall-back positions”.

The first person to counter this flawed claims by the Nigerian President Buhari was the commander of the U.S. Africa Command (USAFRICOM), David Rodriguez, who declared to the U.S. Senate that Boko Haram is still holding territory in Northern Nigeria. General Rodriguez’s claim challenges Nigeria’s official
position on the seven-year old insurgency that has so far claimed more than 30,000 lives and displaced 2.5 million people.

Mr. Rodriguez spoke in response to a question during testimony before the U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee reviewing fiscal year 2017 defence budget. His comment about Boko Haram was in response to a question by Senator Angus King of Maine who asked about Al-Shabaab and Boko Haram more than ninety minutes into the testimony. Mr. Angus’ direct question to General Rodriguez was: “Is Al-Shabaab and Boko Haram growing, are they adding members? I know they don’t hold territory, are they adding areas of influence?” to which Mr. Rodriguez replied, “actually sir, Boko Haram does hold some significant territory in Northern Nigeria as do Al-Shabaab in limited areas of Somalia”.

From the Daily Trust report Boko Haram still have absolute control over at least three (3) LGA in Borno state and a large chunk of the Sambisa forest. The LGAs are Marte, Kala Balge and Damasak. Boko Haram also have peripheral control over some LGAs where they launch deadly attacks against those defenseless communities. Boko Haram is also holding on to an important facility which is a harbour that is at the heart of the Sambisa forest. The harbour was constructed by the military government of Gen Babangida in the 1980s to serve as a training and logistics base for the defunct National Guards.

“The harbour is very big and has some buildings underground. Sadly, all the armaments stocked there were not evacuated up till the time the Boko Haram took over. We strongly believe that top commanders of the group and many high priced hostages are living there. ” the Daily Trust report stated.

It is important to note that lack of sufficient military equipment and funds due to the recession in the Nigerian economy is hampering the fight against the BokoHaram insurgency as the Nigerian government is finding it difficult to acquire quality weapons and equipment especially from Western countries due to the poor human rights records of the Buhari administration. Some months back the influential US Newspaper “The New York Times” wrote an editorial against selling military equipment to the Nigerian government by the U.S. government due to the numerous massacres of the Nigerian army against defenseless and unarmed Nigerian civilians and the Newspaper cited the ZariaMassacre of more than 1000 Shia Muslims last December as a good example.

It is also important to note that President Buhari joined the fraudulent anti-Shia Saudi-led coalition to attract funds and weapons but to his disappointed the Saudi regime have not send anything as the Saudi regime is bugged down in Yemen where the Yemeni freedom fighters have sofar effectively frustrated the US-Saudi imperialist agenda in Yemen. The Saudi economy is also not in the best of times due to low Oil prices that the Saudi regime itself engineered to cripple the economies of Iran and Russia due to the Syrian conflict.

Nigeria should have gotten quality weapons from Iran and the Iranians had promised to help during Buhari’s visit to that country during the Gas Summit that was held in Tehran but the Iranians were disappointed with the Nigerian leadership for massacring more than 1000 defenseless and unarmed Shia Muslims that included 100s of women and children and dumped their dead bodies in mass graves. Iran will never offer its weapons and equipment to a Wahhabi-contaminated regime that has ShiaGenocide as an agenda.

Sadly the Nigerian government and the Nigeria army have been bombarding Nigerians daily with imaginary victories against BokoHaram and most Nigerians were brainwashed with these daily propaganda into thinking that BokoHaram is no more holding any Nigerian territory. After the inhuman ZariaMassacre and the gross corruption against the Nigerian army Chief Buratai, the Nigerian army upped it propaganda of victories and rescue of thousands of Nigerians. I saw one of those headlines of victory that read “Army killed 7 terrorists, rescued 5000 Nigerian hostages”. The first question that I asked was that how can 7 terrorists control 5000 hostages?

On a final note, the actions of the Niger Delta militants “The Niger Delta Avengers” have disrupted the flow of funds to fund the war against insurgency as their action have resulted in Nigeria Oil output been cut by half. President Buhari committed blunders by executing the Saudi-sponsored agenda in Nigeria when he should have concentrated in solving the numerous problems bedevilling the Nigerian state. His open biasness in appointments, bigotry, arrogance and high-headedness have contributed to the rise and growth of fresh militancy in the Niger Delta region. It is the hope of all well-meaning Nigerians that the murderous insurgency is defeated and peace and security return to the Northeast.

Harun Elbinawi
[email protected]