Opinion by Sani Uba
When President Muhammadu Buhari named Major General Farouq Yahaya as the new Chief of Army Staff, this writer was among those skeptical of what to expect from him.
But an incident that puzzled me was video showing soldiers in front of The Theatre Headquarters Commander jubiliating at the appointment of the new COAS. In the past, we have heard of subordinates rejoice at the removal of their bosses.
This incident made me put more eyes on the new COAS.
It was not only the soldiers that rejoiced on the appointment, Borno State Governor, Babagana Zulum said the development showed Buhari’s consistency and commitment in combating insurgency in the North East.
He said that with the appointment, the country has retained the advantage of having in place service chiefs who have all served in Borno and have sufficient operational knowledge in the fight against Boko Haram and ISWAP.
On his own part, the COAS has not wasted time, he has visited the Theatre Headquarters Joint Task Force North East Operation HADIN KAI (OPHK), where he assured troops of adequate medicare and support in the ongoing counter-insurgency operations.
Just as witnessed during his time as the Theatre Commander, troops in the various operations are churning out positive results.
A Boko Haram Terrorists attempted attack on troops of Operation Hadin Kai in Rann the Headquarters of Kala Balge LGA of Borno State failed.
Troops have rescued a teacher and eight students out of those abducted by bandits from the Federal Government College, Birnin Yauri, Kebbi State.
A top ISWAP Commander, Amir Modu Kennam known as ‘One Eye General’, was eliminated.
Impeccable sources familiar with the activities and developments in the terror group said that several other fighters were eliminate.Until his tragic end, Kennami was a top terror Commander who had three other dreaded Commanders, namely, Ba-Lawan, Modu Sulum and Amir Modu Borzogo, taking orders from him. He had his territories where he carried out terror activities covering communities in Gujba LGA – Lamisuri, Bijur and Dalari villages; Damboa LGA – Bugadam, Talala, Ajigin, Mungusum Gwagwari, Abulam, Ajigin and Doksa villages; Kaga LGA – Borgozo, Alagarno, Goniri Marguba and Konduga Local Government area which included Jewu Lamboa, Limlim villages.
He also terrorized Magumeri, Nganzai and Gubio axis and had led many operations to dislodge military bases and formations in the general area.
Meanwhile, troops of Joint Task Force North East Operation HADIN KAI (OPHK) deployed at the Forward Operational Base (FOB) of 152 Battalion, Kumshe on Sunday, 20 June 2021 killed 6 Boko Haram terrorists (BHTs) on a suicidal infiltration attempt into the camp.
In another incident, twenty insurgents were killed by Nigerian Army Troops of Sector 2 Joint Task Force, Operation Hadin Kai in conjunction with the Air Task Force at Lamboa, Borno State.
The heat on bandits and other criminal elements in Niger State is already causing them to start fleeing to supposed safe heavens.
All the positive news came as Nigerians welcome the Senate’s confirmation of Maj-Gen Farouq Yahaya as Chief of Army Staff (COAS).
To those still skeptical, the Nigerian Army under Yahaya is already showing signs of good tidings expected in the coming days.
It is not yet Uhuru, the COAS must keep up the good work, while Nigerians should support our troops who continue to make sacrifices for the good of our country.
Uba Sanni is Convener, Nigerian Forward Movement (NFM).