PARENTS in Chibok Local Government Area of Borno State appear to have resigned to fate over the possibility of getting back the over 200 girls abducted from a secondary school by Boko Haram insurgents from the community in April.
However, the military disclosed, on Saturday, that over 50 members of the group were killed in a raid on their hideout in Kawuri area of the state.
Reports have indicated that the Chibok girls’ parents are calling for a massive invasion of the area by Federal Government troops to rout the militants, even if it means sacrificing the long-awaited girls.
An online news medium, Premium Times, reported the chairman of Chibok Local government, Tsambido Hosea, declared in Abuja at the weekend that parents of the children were seeking an end to their trauma, either by reunion with the girls or their (girls’) burial.
“If the Federal Government has that capacity, let it go into Sambisa. If there are some (of the girls) that God says would be rescued, they can be rescued by the forces and if some have gone, it is better (to know) than this trauma the parents are going through,” he said.
He added that the parents wanted to bury their children, if they were dead, so that they could forge ahead with their lives, “instead of living with uncertainty, not knowing if their children are dead or alive.
“They (parents) cannot do anything. But had it been they have buried their children, they would have forged ahead with their lives.”
Hosea spoke further that; “the parents say they don’t care about their lives, but let them go in; if they can take care of this Boko Haram, so that they (Boko Haram) will not spread to other places; so that they do not continue being a menace. Let the girls be sacrificial lambs. That’s what they told me yesterday.
“I phoned them, saying that I knew that I was going to face some (journalists for) interviews today. I asked them: What is your opinion? So, this is their opinion.
“They are saying the government should go into the forest. Even, if it is corpse, let them bring the corpse of the children so that they will bury them properly. What they are saying is that with these girls in the bush, it is better for the government to go in with the forces; with the army might and bring the girls, even if it is the corpses, for them, so that they can bury them properly,” he said.
‘Girls moved to Lake Chad Island’
In the meantime, it has been revealed that a large number of the girls are in custody of a group of the insurgents on Lake Chad Island.
Security operatives in Baga town of Kukawa Local Government Area of the state, who revealed that they arrested two suspected Boko Haram members, said these suspects disclosed this.
Those in the group , according to the operatives, are over 1,000 and are planning to take over Kukawa Local Government and establish their stronghold in that axis, in preparation to launch massive attack on Maiduguri, the state capital, in order to extend their new caliphate.
A security source said that with the revelations from the suspects arrested, at least, it was known that about 132 of the Chibok girls were around that axis and that a surreptitious operation might take place to rescue them and dislodge the insurgents from the Island.
Security chiefs lag on information –Source
A top security personnel in Maiduguri, who pleaded anonymity, said forces had been receiving reports regarding the operations of the insurgents only for such reports to end up on the tables of their chiefs either in Maiduguri or Abuja.
“This is certainly not the first time we have been receiving security reports on the activities of the insurgents and nothing is done about it. For example, they would tell you that they are working on it. Would the Boko Haram wait for you to finish your paper work before it attacks?” he queried.
He added that “we have problems with some of us here or in Abuja. Look at the situation now, from the Defence Headquarters, they said, Air Force fighter jet is bombarding those insurgents in Bama, but the report we are receiving now is that the insurgents have dislodged our men at Madagali in Adamawa State.
“They know the insurgents are there; the fighter jet would come, survey the whole area and throw bombs on mountains, while the insurgents are there laughing. We are getting fed up with paper works.
“The boys need action. I believe that only a few people are now remaining in Gwoza. There is always collateral damage. The caliphate is still there standing for over one month and nothing is done about it. If they bring in new weapons, instead of giving it out for work, they would say, take it to the armoury. And before you know it, Boko Haram will attack and all the weapons turn to their own; they will turn back and use them to kill everybody.
“Let me tell you, I don’t know whether you have watched the Boko Haram video in Gwoza. Before they arrived, all soldiers ran away because the weapons were kept in the armoury and those one came and took away everything.
“I believe that is what they used to attack Bama. Only God helped us that the fighter jet was ahead of the insurgents in Bama and it destroyed all the weapons in the barracks before they got to them, otherwise, Maiduguri would have been a caliphate by now.
“There is no deliberate effort in this operation. I do not blame the Federal Government. The president is doing well, but the Generals want this war prolonged.
“Now, they have taken over almost all Northern and Eastern Borno. If they motivate these boys and give them all the weapons locked up, give these boys two days, they will overrun Boko Haram in all their hiding places and areas they have captured.
“But if they continue to tell people stories, Maiduguri is likely to be taken. And I tell you, the people will begin to call for the ECOWAS forces here. I think some of us, even among security circle, prefer call for ECOWAS forces by now. Perhaps, only then will we be serious in fighting the insurgents.
“If you have been to Cameroon, you will appreciate military. If Paul Biya, their president, is going somewhere, even the trees around would know that security is at work.
Here, we have a situation and still, we cannot do enough for people to see and be relaxed. If we are doing well, why are people leaving the town? The government here will come and tell you stories. Well, let us continue to pray and hope for the best.”
The source said that were it not for the multinational task forces in Baga, the area too would have long been under the control of the Boko Haram.
Sect kills scores in Adamawa
Scores of people were feared killed as Boko Haram insurgents attacked Adamawa communities in Madagali and Michika local government areas as well as Gulak, the hometown of the acting governor of the state.
The insurgents launched the attacks late Friday night. The reportedly had a field day in Shuwa, Gulak and some Michika communities, while security forces mobilised to repel the attacks.
A resident who sought for anonymity revealed that the insurgents occupied government buildings and shot at many people who were trapped in the town.
According to him, many who fled the attacks reported the death of scores of relatives left behind in the exchange of gunfire between the insurgents and security forces.
He said some of the soldiers who were overpowered by the insurgents after many hours of gun duel fled into the bush, while others zoomed off in overloaded vans.
“Hundreds of them carrying dangerous weapons just appeared from the bush and shot at soldiers and other security buildings in the town. We escaped by a whisker, but some were trapped there. We heard they shot many people this morning,” he said.
Another resident, Ibrahim Sani, said armed men flooded the town at around 5.00 p.m. on Friday and engaged soldiers in a gun battle that lasted for hours before the soldiers fled in various directions.
Some people in Michika and Uba towns said displaced persons from Gulak trooped to their town after escaping from Gulak, a development which led to pandemonium amid news that the insurgents were advancing.
One of the fleeing residents, Aisha Buba, who spoke to journalists on phone, said after escaping to Michika, she realised the town was not safe as Boko Haram fighters were said to be close to it.
She indicated her intention to quickly leave the town for Mubi, considered to be far away and relatively safe. But a relation of one of the deceased, who gave her name as Kwala, said she lost three relations in the attacks.
The Chief Press Secretary to the acting governor, Solomon Kumanga, confirmed that insurgents took over of the town, saying many people were killed.
But he denied reports that the residence of his boss in Gulak was torched by the Boko Haram fighters.
Attempt to speak to chairman of Madagali, James Watharda, was not successful as his phone was switched off.