A statement by the Acting Director, Army Public Relations (DAPR), Col. Sani Usman, said the operation, which was part of efforts to clear "the remnants of Boko Haram in various hideouts and enclaves", also culminated in the recovery of weapons and vehicles.
Read statement below: "In their continuous efforts of clearing the remnants of Boko Haram in various hideouts and enclaves, troops of 7 Brigade, 8 Task Force Division, have also embarked on clearance operations, since yesterday in which they cleared Boko Haram hideouts ahead of Gratte in Kukawa Local Government Area of Borno State. During the clearance operation, the troops killed 7 Boko Haram terrorists including a notorious kingpin popularly known as the Albani of Monguno. The troops also recovered 2 Vehicles, 7 motorcycles 1 AK-47 rifle, 2 Boko Haram terrorists hoisted flags, 3 vehicle tyres, 1 vulcanizing machine, 1 solar panel and bundles of chewing stick (Aswaki), which the terrorists believed has spiritual and medicinal values. It is gratifying to report that the troops' morale remains high as they dominate the general area with a robust fighting patrol in continuation with the clearance operations".
The military is being accused by the human rights group of trying to cover up the unlawful killings of members of Islamic Movement of Nigeria, which took place in city of Zaria over a two-day period spanning from December 12 to 14 of last year. The report released on Friday follows the organization's attempt to urge the government to investigate the issue, a call sparked by a state official who said the bodies of 347 people had been put into mass graves.
"Unearthing the truth: Unlawful killings and mass cover-up in Zaria", is based on interviews with 92 people, including victims, witnesses from the Shi'ite and other communities, relatives of victims, residents of the areas where the incidents took place, lawyers and medical personnel and contains shocking eyewitness testimony of large-scale unlawful killings by the Nigerian military and exposes a crude attempt by the authorities to destroy and conceal evidence.
The NECAT also lauded the Chief of Army Staff, Tukur Buratai, for refusing to toll the part of his predecessors who instead of fighting the terrorism were busy enriching themselves to the detriment of the Nigerians. NECAT National Coordinator, Yusuf Gonmina Mshelizza, in a letter to President Muhammadu Buhari and copied to the Chief of Army Staff wants to lead the solidarity march in honour of the government's effort in eradicating insurgency and to openly appreciate the Nigerian Army for their zeal to salvage the North Eastern States.
Boko Haram fighters attacked Nigerian troops early yesterday, after two suspected suicide bombers were shot dead near military positions. A soldier on the battle fieldtold AFP that the troops were ordered to the town of Damasak near the border with Niger and took up position in Kareto, some 38km away.
The Assistant Director, Army Public Relations of the Guards Brigade, Capt. Bashir Jajira, said that 36 of the suspects were arrested by the troops at a military checkpoint between the Federal Capital Territory and Nasarawa State. "A group of 36 herdsmen in Diana Truck and Toyota Camry car with registration number Abu Kuje 994 FX and Niger SUL 541 XA were intercepted and arrested at 177 Guards Battalion location by Keffi checkpoint. "During the interrogation by troops at the checkpoint, they claimed to be going to Nasarawa Local Government in Nasarawa State." "The arrested herdsmen would be handed over to the police for prosecution.
The Theatre Commander, Operation Lafiya Dole, Maj. Gen. Lucky Irabor, told journalists that the troops recovered the items, following a tip off. Irabor said that the patrol team also cleared some remnants of the Boko Haram who were dislodged from Alagarno and were in three camps at Kadari, Abu Fayima and Gursum.
The Acting Director, Army Public Relations, Sani Usman, said in a statement said that the storage contained large quantity of foodstuff when it was discovered. Mr. Usman also said the troops also found that the terrorists were mounting sentries on tree tops to gather intelligence on the advancement of troops.
The troops, who were on a cordon and search operation in Idema Community, Ogbia Local Government Area of Bayelsa State, were engaged in a gun battle by the pirates which led to death of one of the gunmen, while others escaped with gunshot injuries. Other items recovered include magnum double barrel gun, 273 round of 7.62mm special, 7 empty magazines of AK 47 rifle, one empty magazine of FN rifle and 9 packs of explosives suspected to be dynamites.
Acting Director Army Public Relations, during the operation, the troops were able to rescued a kidnap victim who was earlier shot and kidnapped by his abductors at Aba on 6th April 2016. One other member of the gang in a bid to evade arrest through the roof of their den fell from a roof, hit his head on the hard floor and died.
This was confirmed by the Secretary to the Kaduna State Government, SSG, Balarabe Abbas Lawal who appeared before an ongoing sitting of the Judicial Commission of Inquiry. Justifying the demolition further, the SSG said a report from a team of engineers who carried out inspection on the structures, said the buildings were failed structures and the interest and safety of the public warranted demolition.