– as sect attacks Babangida community in Yobe, Central Chad
In an aggressive bid to end the Boko Haram insurgency, President Muhammadu Buhari has ordered the release of $21million (more than N4bn) to the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF).
The money is to be released within the next one week to the multi-country military agency fighting the sect.
Nigeria made a pledge of $100 million (over N20bn) as part of funds needed by the MNJTF- which is made up of troops from Nigeria, Chad, Niger, and Cameroon – to fight the war against Boko Haram.
Speaking while chairing the Peace Security Council meeting at the 25th African Union summit in Johannesburg (South Africa), Buhari said it was time to put an end to the crisis in the African region before the 2020 target.
The AU Summit was the president’s first continental assignment since taking office and was accompanied by Governors Ibikunle Amosun (Ogun) and Samuel Ortom (Benue) and former Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General Abdulrahman Dambazau.
In his words, “Our continents is inundated with conflicts of diverse forms. They include the crisis in Burkina Faso, Mali, Libya, Central Africa Republic, South Sudan, and more recently in Burundi.”
Continuing, he said: “As you are aware in 2013 during our 50th anniversary celebration of our union, we as African leaders committed ourselves to the objective of silencing the local guns in Africa by 2020.”
President Buhari called on members of the Peace and Security Committee to put into proper context during the course of deliberations, the situations in South Sudan and Burundi, where the citizens were suffering while the leaders were bickering.
In another development, at least 27 people, including four suspected Boko Haram terrorists, were killed and 100 others injured on Monday, June 15 in two attacks in Chad’s capital, N’Djamena, which the government has blamed on the sect.
The attacks, which included at least one suicide bombing, are the first of their kind in Chad, an oil-producing nation and a major Western ally which has spearheaded offensives on al Qaeda-linked groups in Mali and on Boko Haram in neighbour, Nigeria.
Speaking on state television, Communications Minister, Hassan Sylla Bakari said, “Boko Haram is making a mistake by targeting Chad.”
He further said, “These lawless terrorists will be chased out and neutralized wherever they are.”
Similarly, gunmen believed to be Boko Haram terrorists attacked Babangida council headquarters in Yobe state on Sunday, June 14 torching the Divisional Police Station, secretariat complex, telecom masts and several other houses and buildings.
Reports, however, claim no one was killed in the attack.
MILITARY MOVE BASE TO MAIDUGURI, BORNO
In compliance with President Buhari’s directive on May 29, military authorities have started moving their command centre to Maiduguri, Borno State, to combat Islamist militant group, Boko Haram.
A statement by the Acting Director, Army Public Relations, Sani Usman, on Monday, June 8, stated that the advance team had already commenced work in earnest. The team, which comprises officers and men drawn from the Office of the Chief of Army Staff, all the relevant Army Headquarters departments and other combat support personnel, is led by a two- star General. Buhari had during his inaugural address ordered the command centre be moved to Borno State to give more bite to the fight against insurgency.
In the president’s words, “The most immediate is Boko Haram insurgency. Progress has been made in recent weeks by our security forces but victory cannot be achieved by basing the Command and Control Centre in Abuja. The command centre will be relocated to Maiduguri and remain there until Boko Haram is completely subdued.”