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ISWAP Ultimatum Fuels Boko Haram Resurgence in Northeast

by on December 31, 2018
 

The threat by the Islamic State West African Province (ISWAP) to expel Boko Haram from its fold for failing to meet the three-year ultimatum given to it to recapture Nigerian territories it previously occupied in the North-east, has fuelled the group’s renewed attacks on military personnel and installations in the crisis-torn region, investigation has revealed.

Reports gathered that ISWAP’s threat has put pressure on the terrorists to intensify attacks on the Nigerian troops so as not to be expelled by the Islamist group.

This development, it is learnt, has changed the dynamics of the war on terror in recent months.

A survey carried out by the International Terror Monitoring Group (ITMG), a global group that monitors the activities of terrorists across the world, showed that the three-year ultimatum given to Boko Haram to recapture territories formerly under its control had expired.

It said, “The ISIS has threatened to expel Boko Haram from its fold for its inability to sustain the tempo in the ongoing war with the Nigeria Army as reflected in it losing areas that hitherto were strongholds, such as Camp Zero in Sambisa Forest as well as the lucrative Kukawa-Baga-Chad-Niger route.

“The critical aspect of the deal for the Boko Haram insurgents is in their desire to continue to have supplies in arms and ammunition from the ISIS group.

“Their main supply would be cut off, and they stand the risk of going into oblivion should that happen.

“The renewed onslaught against the Nigerian Army is to put out a bold face to the ISIS network that they Boko Haram are in control of major communities in North-east of Nigeria, and which is far from the case. This much they have tried to achieve but with a heavy price in the number of casualties it suffered.”

investigation also revealed that the continued stay in office of the military service chiefs is fuelling sabotage in the ongoing war against terrorism, thus prolonging the crisis.

BT gathered that despite the recent promotions in the military, partly designed to douse tension and complaints over stagnation and career retrogression of senior officers arising from the tenure extension of service chiefs, the discontent is playing out in the form of sabotage of the ongoing war on terror.

Top military sources, who spoke to journalists on the condition of anonymity, said the sabotage, which has led to the killing of soldiers on a daily basis by insurgents was a corollary of alleged “corruption at the highest levels” of the military high command.

He said, “The service chiefs have lost a sense of direction. What other senior officers want is for them to leave because they have run out of ideas.

“There is also corruption or why will budgetary allocations not be properly applied and soldiers are dying daily because they have no quality weapons to fight people with more sophisticated weapons?

“Yet people are in the media everyday lying about imaginary victories recorded.”

Another high ranking military source said the situation had become untenable “because when I know how much you have signed away for arms procurement, feeding, payment and all that and I can’t see the evidence and you post me somewhere empty-handed, what do you think I will do?”

But in a swift reaction, the spokesman of Defence Headquarters, Brig. Gen. John Agim, said there was no case of sabotage in the war.

According to him, “I have not seen the report – International Strategic Studies Association report – that accused military high command of corruption you talked about. If I react to it they may say it is not what they said.

“Who is talking about corruption and sabotage? The citizens have a right to know but when a citizen sits down and begins to talk about what he knows nothing about, then you are discouraging those who are fighting the war.

“If there is sabotage, we in the military should know those who are saboteurs. You cannot sit somewhere and talk about sabotage and corruption.

“Some senior officers died in action so who is sabotaging who? There is a point the citizens will get to then they have to fight the war themselves because if you discourage soldiers and they can’t fight, you have to fight the war yourselves.”

Meanwhile, hundreds of Baga residents and surrounding towns have fled to Maiduguri as insurgents’ attacks intensify.

Reports gathered that they have been arriving Maiduguri in their numbers since Saturday.

A faction of Boko Haram, ISWAP, which split from the insurgency in 2016, had claimed responsibility for an attack on a military base in Baga, a town in eastern Borno State, which the Nigerian Army said took place last Wednesday.

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