ISWAP terrorists regrouping around Lake Chad — Ndume

Factual Pursuit of Truth for Progress

The Chairman, Sen­ate Committee on Army, Ali Ndume, has raised the alarm that Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) terrorists are re­grouping in the Lake Chad axis.

Ndume, representing Borno South at the upper chamber of the National Assembly, made this known to news­men on Sunday while reacting to the attacks on Askira in Borno by ISWAP terrorists at the weekend.

A brigadier general, some soldiers and many terrorists were killed during a confrontation with Nigerian troops, who battled to avert an attack by the terrorists.

Brig-Gen. Dzarma Zirkusu, who was the Commander of the 28 Task Force Brigade, Chi­bok, was on a reinforcement mission to Askira in Borno South, which was under siege by terrorists, when he was am­bushed.

Ndume commiserated with the Nigerian army over the incident and hailed Brig-Gen. Zirkusu as a gallant soldier, who took the fight to the ter­rorists.

He said, though the troops had been taking out key ISWAP commanders in Bor­no, the intensity of the attack on Askira was worrisome and urged other security agencies to give the Nigerian army the needed support.

The lawmaker also urged residents around the Chibok area to be calm and not relo­cate, assuring that the Nigeri­an army has what it takes to take the fight to the insurgents.

He said, “I want to express my condolences to the Nigeri­an army over the death of the General who died along Chi­bok road.

“ISWAP terrorists attacked a town there. They know that the General was the major ob­stacle to their operation. They laid an ambush and rammed a bomb-laden car into his ve­hicle.

“He was a gallant soldier. He took the fight to the terror­ists. His death has sent panic to people in that area.

“I am aware that some peo­ple around that Chibok area have started thinking of relo­cating.

“Some want to go to Mubi and other places. We are trying to urge them to remain there. The insurgency is coming to an end.

“This is not the end, but the beginning of the end of terror­ists. I know that the army has what it takes to take the fight to them.

“There is a need to urge other security agencies to give the army the needed support. We also need to urge vigilante groups to assist them.

“For now, we will assume that it was an isolated case. But the intensity with which they came is worrisome.

“They came with more than 10 gun trucks. They are also regrouping around Borno North. That’s the Lake Chad axis.

“The military is aware and the air force is providing surveillance in the area. It was a revenge mission. The army has been taking out key ISWAP commanders and they had their revenge.

“Last week, for instance, they abducted relatives of the Emir of Askira. They also ab­ducted some passengers along that road. If the army sustains the tempo, we will win this in­surgency.

“The equipment are arriv­ing gradually. We are monitor­ing. As a committee, we will go and see what had been brought into the country.

“This is an improvement. The army is very rapid in responding. The army is in­volved in about 33 states now. They’re under pressure.”


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