Yusuf Alli. THE NATION.1ST AUG 2013
The Defence Headquarters on Thursday gave insights into how a Boko Haram leader and other suspected members of the sect were captured in Niger Republic.
All the suspects are presently undergoing interrogation in an unnamed military facility.
According to a statement issued by the Director of Defence Information, Brig.-Gen. Chris Olukolade, the breakthrough was recorded through intelligence gathering.
He said the intention of the sect leader and those arrested was to rearm from Niger Republic and launch deadly attacks on Nigerian communities.
The statement said: “The plan by a band of terrorists who relocated to Niger Republic to remobilize and rearm insurgents with the aim of carrying out fresh terrorists attacks on some Nigerian communities has been foiled.
“The leader of the group who had fled Nigeria when the terrorist camps were sacked was reportedly recruiting fresh hands and training them for renewed terrorist activities in Nigeria.
“The intention of the group is to focus its attacks on some towns around the Nigeria-Niger Republic border.”
“Intelligence operatives of the Multi-National Joint Task Force (MNJTF) had been on the trail of the leader until he was eventually arrested in Karanga, Niger Republic on Saturday with the cooperation of Nigerien forces.
“His other accomplices were later picked up in other villages in Nigeria. They are currently being interrogated.
A source, who spoke in confidence, added: “Investigation revealed that following their dislodgement from their camps in Nigeria, the Boko Haram leader relocated to Niger Republic with his cell members.
“While in Niger Republic, they tried to regroup and recruit more hands to be able to attack Nigerian communities. When we got intelligence report, we contacted our Nigerien counterpart. The Boko Haram suspects were trailed and their leader was captured.
“We succeeded in arresting other members of the cell and they were brought down to Nigeria from Niger.”