Nigerian military reinforces troops in Damasak as Boko Haram informants intensify ‘criminal’ activities
Meanwhile, it was learnt that despite the nefarious activities of local informants who regularly tip off the Islamic State of West Africa Province (ISWAP) and Boko Haram terrorists of troops’ operations, the Nigerian military has reinforced its ground troops with sophisticated equipment and Air Task Force’s support, to contain the insurgents terrorizing the Damasak axis.
With the aid of local informants, there have been unrelenting assaults on Damasak by both ISWAP and Boko Haram fighters, in recent times.
It was discovered that, in some communities, the informants not only leak vital information to the terrorists but harbour them in their houses and settlements.
These informants have also been found to assist terrorists in planting landmines against Nigerian troops.
An intelligence operative, who revealed that informants hint terrorists of troops’ movements, said the informants’ behaviour is aiding the infiltration of Damasak town and surrounding communities by insurgents.
“It is quite puzzling that while our gallant troops are manning specific locations and conducting patrols, the terrorists with the aid of their local collaborators would just appear from other locations and launch deadly surprise attacks on both troops and civilian populations.
“Though the military is reinforcing the troops with more equipment, the air supports have also led to the elimination of scores of Boko Haram and ISWAP, in the past few weeks,” he said.
Spokesperson of the Nigerian Army, Brig. Gen. Mohammed Yerima, confirmed the activities of informants while debunking reports in a section of the media that the terrorists had overrun and were in control of Damasak town.
He said despite the setbacks occasion by the informants ‘vicious’ activities, troops have been able to surmount some of the obstacles.
Yerima who described some of the media reports as blatant misinformation said there was an attack by the terrorists on the town, but the terrorists were effectively repelled by the troops.
“As we speak, troops are in total control of the general area. The Commander of 5 Brigade, Brig.-Gen. S. S. Tilawan was driving around the town to assess the general situation, following the attack by the terrorists,” he said.
The Army spokesperson said that the terrorists sneaked in from the northern flank in active collaboration with some local informants.
It was gathered that the terrorists invaded Damasak for the third time within a week. In the aftermath of the attack, humanitarian offices, private residences, shops and security facilities, were destroyed.
In another development, Nigerian Troops have cleared Boko Haram fighters from five villages in Gamboru Axis.
Some of the villages cleared include Gulwa, Ndufu, Eisari , Musiri and Diime Villages, with scores of terrorists killed during the operation.
The troops, led by Lt. Colonel Samson Oladeigbe, embarked on a ‘Long Range Fighting Patrol’ to clear the unit’s areas of responsibility from Super Camp Headquarters in Gamboru.
They eliminated scores of terrorists during the operation. And apart from rifles and gun, the troops recovered magazine carrier, a Boko Haram flag, solar panel, bicycles and motorcycles from the terrorists.