By Kingsley Omonobi and Joseph Erunke
Abuja – Shocking revelations emerged yesterday, of how parents in Nigeria’s North East States of Borno, Adamawa and Yobe wilfully donate their children, particularly the girls, to be strapped with Improvised Explosive Devices, IEDs, and blown to pieces, as their contribution to Boko Haram.
Also Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshall Sadique Abubakar, Sunday, said that in spite of recent resurgence in activities of Boko Haram terrorists in the North East, especially Borno State, where several people including soldiers and oil workers were killed with some abducted by the terrorists, the Nigerian military had decimated the terrorists’ strength.
The Nigerian Army, while confirming the weird development, appealed to religious leaders, traditional rulers and community leaders to help dissuade their people from the donation spree.
According to a statement signed by the Director, Army Public Relations, Brigadier-General Sani Usman, many of the girls used for suicide bombings who were arrested or who were lucky that the IEDs planted on their bodies failed to detonate, made the confession to the military authorities.
Usman said in a statement, “The Nigerian army wishes to appeal to religious, traditional and community leaders, as well as all well-meaning Nigerians especially in the north east of the country, to help dissuade people from donating their daughters or wards, to Boko Haram terrorists for indoctrination and suicide bombing missions.
“This appeal became expedient in view of recent revelations by some intercepted female suicide bombers during interrogations”.
“It was discovered that most of these hapless minors were ‘donated’ to the terrorists’ sect by their heartless and misguided parents and guardians, as part of their contribution to the perpetuation of the Boko Haram terrorists’ dastardly acts against the Nigerian society and humanity”.
“The acts of these parents and guardians are not only barbaric, but condemnable and unacceptable.
“Nigerians have a responsibility and obligation to collectively mould our children and wards and define a better future for them rather than condemning them to death by the criminal Boko Haram terrorists and their sympathizers through suicide bombings”.
“Consequently, the public are kindly requested to be more vigilant, security conscious and report any suspicious persons or those whose daughters or female wards are missing or have not been seen recently.
“You can report by calling 193 on any network”.
“The public is also reminded that the Nigerian Army’s offer and reward of the sum of Five Hundred Thousand Naira (N500, 000. 00) to anybody that brought information about suicide bombing, is still available” the Army spokesman said.
Despite resurgence of Boko Haram killings, abduction,Nigeria now more secured-Abubakar
IN spite of recent resurgence in activities of Boko Haram terrorists in the North East, especially Borno State, where several people including soldiers and oil workers were killed with some abducted by the terrorists,Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshall Sadique Abubakar, Sunday, said the Nigerian military had decimated the terrorists’ strength.
He insisted that the military had won the war against the terrorists, saying the remnants whose activities were noted few weeks ago would soon be silenced by the superior power of the Nigerian Armed Forces.
Addressing officers and men of the Nigerian Air Force at the Mogadishu Cantonment, Abuja, during the annual Nigerian Air Force 10km Walk/Jog Exercise, Abubakar insisted that the country was at the moment more secured than how it was before the emergence of the present federal administration, given the strength of the dreaded sect in the past.
To this end, he tasked personnel of the service to continue to rededicate themselves “so that every Nigerian territory will be secured and so that every Nigerian will be secured.”
“Despite the challenges and few setbacks we have had in the last few weeks,I believe that we are on track in terms of making Nigeria a more secured country.
“Looking back from where were are coming from,I believe that I will be stating the obvious to say that we have made substantial progress and Nigeria today is more secured than before, “he said.
But the Air Force boss, who said his organization would continue to re-evaluate its operations for effectiveness, also said it would not hesitate to re-strategise for better outcome if the need arises.
He said:” We will continue to re-evaluate our operations from time to time and we will not shy away from re-strategising if there is the need to do that.
Air Marshall Abubakar added that with the reactivation of more helicopter gunships, training and retraining of the service personnel and mass recruitment of airmen and women by his service, the Nigerian Air Force was on the track of making the country a better place to for all live.
“With what we had indebted in the fight against terrorism, the helicopter gunships and from from what the 12 aircraft we helped reactivated to add to the fight and the number of pilots were have trained as well as the number of air men and air women we have recruited,I believe that we are on track to making this country a better place, “he said.
The Air Force boss, while noting that modern day challenges were very complex, said the development necessitated the annual exercise by his organization, as according to him,” if we are to be effective in the discharge of our responsibilities as provided in the Constitution.”
Hear him:”The challenges of modern times are very complex and therefore require not only a very sound mind but a very sound body to be able to profer solutions to these challenges. And therefore ,a physically sound body is essential if we are to be effective in the discharge of our responsibilities as provided in the Constitution.”
Abubakar, while also noting that his organization was involved in various security operations in all parts of the country, said the Air Force under his leadership was combat ready to tackle headlong challenges it may faced.
“As you are aware, the Nigerian Air Force is faced with various theatres of operations, whether in the North East, in the South South or the North West.
“We are no doubt on track with regards to the kind of structures we want for our Air Force, for better efficiency and effectiveness.
“We are equally on track with regards to capacity building.We have continued to train and retrain our pilots, engineers and technicians so that we can have a very effective service.
“We are equally on track in terms of reactivation of air planes. We are similarly on track in terms of providing for the welfare of our personnel, “he stressed.
On the welfare of the Air Force personnel, he said:” I want to assure you that the leadership of the Air Force will continue to address your welfare needs, we are not unaware of the fact that we have entrusted you with very expensive platform and therefore,we must provide for your accommodation, for your medical needs, for your allowances and for your schools for your children.
“We will continue to work on that and make sure that you are in the best frame of mind to be effective in the discharge of your responsibilities.”
While noting that physical fitness was pivotal to people as humans and most especially members of the armed forces, the Nigerian Air Force chief said it was in such light that his service had continued to carry out the exercise quarterly.
He implored members to continue to exercise their bodies so as to keep fit for day to day activities and also remain healthy.
He used the occasion to congratulate personnel who put up brilliant performance during the recent 2nd Inter Command Combat Games in Jos, Plateau State.
“I am indeed very proud of you all and will continue to organize more sporting activities that would improve the performance of our sports men and women.
“We are not unaware of problems of lack of coaches and the gaps in some sporting events especially long distance races.
” We will do everything humanly possible to recruit competent civilians as coaches and sportsmen to fill these gaps.
“Accordingly, adequate funding will be provided to ensure that our sports men excel in all competitions they are involved in, “he further said.