BY EMEKA MAMAH & SAM EYOBOKA with Agency reports
KANO – Islamist sect, Boko Haram, has threatened to bring down the Federal Government led by President Goodluck Jonathan within three months. Purported leader of the sect said this in his second video posted on the Internet yesterday.
The 14 minutes, two seconds video of Abubakar Shekau seen on YouTube was in response to Jonathan’s comments while in South Korea, about two weeks ago, that the Boko Haram phenomenon would be under control by the middle of this year.
The sect’s threat came even as police yesterday confirmed that the death toll from an attack by unknown gunmen suspected to be members of the Islamist group on a town along Nigeria’s border with Cameroon has risen to no fewer than 10. Boko Haram’s attacks have left over 1,000 people dead since mid-2009. Apart from the latest attack in Borno, about 46 people died following bomb attack on residents of Kaduna on Easter day.
Christians from the 17 Southern states of the country had at an extraordinary meeting in Lagos on Wednesday appealed to the Northern elite, including religious leaders and politicians to rise to the challenges of insecurity which is capable of breaking up the country.
“You, Jonathan, cannot stop us; instead we will devour you in the three months like you are boasting,” Shekau said in the video entitled “Message to Goodluck Jonathan”. He was flanked by four masked men holding rifles as he spoke.
“We are proud soldiers of Allah; we will never give up as we fight the infidels. We will emerge as winners … we will finish you and end your government,” Shekau said in Arabic and the Hausa languages.
Boko Haram, has killed hundreds in bomb and gun attacks in northern Nigeria and around the capital Abuja this year.
Threat to President Jonathan
In the new video, Boko Haram otherwise known as the Jama’atu Ahl-Sunnati Lil Da’awati Wal Jihad stated that President Goodluck Jonathan cannot end its insurgency in June as publicly stated.
Sheik Abubakar Imam Shekau the leader of the group also said that the Nigerian security agencies cannot take down the sect by June 2012 as earlier promised by Jonathan. The sect leader appeared agitated throughout the video recording.
In the preamble of the message, Shekau vowed that it must destroy Christians and Christianity in Nigeria particularly those killing Muslims in Nigeria just as it said it will also kill all Muslims aiding the arrest and harassment of its members.
Shekau further said: “If death is your worldly gain, for us, it is eternal victory to die working for Allah. Our joy is to die in Jihad for Allah against infidels like you…
“We are also aware of some Muslims using our name to make money, we will say nothing but let them continue, and they will meet Allah in the last day.
“We are not doing physical human service, but Allah’s work and it is clear your aim is killing us. Let me tell you with Allah we will triumph over you and your men in hundreds. We are not boasting.
“Allah that finished Pharaoh and other wicked rulers that you are not up to, will finish you and end your government. We are not afraid because we are not doing man’s work but Allah’s work. And we will see who will carry the day.”
Suspected Boko Haram members burnt down immigration and customs posts in the town of Banki in Borno state Tuesday night, and also tried to set fire to a police station where officers repelled them.
An Army spokesman earlier confirmed five people, including one customs and an immigration officer killed.
Borno State police Commissioner Bala Hassan told the international media yesterday that five suspected Boko Haram members were also killed during a shootout when they attempted to attack the police station.
”The attackers tried to burn down the Banki police station during the attack but the police repelled them and killed five gunmen in the shootout.
”We recovered two AK47 rifles with 12 rounds of ammunition and a car used by the attackers,” he said.
Banki has a popular market patronised by traders from Nigeria, Cameroon and Chad.
However, criminal gangs have also carried out robberies and assaults under the guise of Boko Haram.
The Federal Government, Tuesday, flagged off the building of some Almajiri Boarding Primary Schools in some states across the North in an attempt to appease the Boko Haram sect but a Kaduna-based rights activist, Shehu Sani dismissed the idea, describing them as ‘’white elephant projects.’’
Meanwhile, rising from their emergency meeting in Lagos Wednesday, southern Christian leaders urged northern leaders to curtail the alleged excesses of adherents of the Islamic sect.
In a 10-point communiqué at the end of its inaugural meeting at the Bola Memorial Anglican Church, Ikeja, the Christian leaders agreed to establish a group to be known as “Southern CAN”, asking the Northern leaders to save the nation from imminent collapse by helping to curtail the activities of Boko Haram.
The communique signed by the chairman, vice chairman and secretary of the group, Anglican Primate, Nicholas Okoh; Archbishop George Amu and Apostle Joseph Ajujungwa respectively also urged President Jonathan to remain steadfast and resolute in delivering his election promises to Nigerians.
The interdenominational Southern CAN, which would now serve as a rallying point for Christians in the 17 southern states condemned the incessant bombings and blood letting in different parts of Northern Nigeria and urged the Federal Government and other relevant authorities to find an end to the menace.
They also pledged the unalloyed loyalty of the group to the leadership of the National President of the Christian Association of Nigeria,CAN, Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor and “enjoined all Christians to do same and always speak with one voice.