The High Command of the Nigerian Army today said that troops of Operations Lafiya Dole has liberated Marte local government area
from the control of Boko Haram, in response to the 48 hours ultimatum given to the troops by the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Major General Ibrahim Attahiru.
Director Army Public Relations, Brigadier General Mohammed Yerima confirmed this cheering development in a telephone chat with Nigerian Pilot.
He, however, did not give further details on the operation that liberated the Boko Haram stronghold.
Recall that the Chief of Army Staff, COAS, Major General Ibrahim Attahiru on Sunday gave troops of the Nigerian Army, ‘Operation Lafiya Dole’ 48 hours to clear insurgents off Marte Local Government Area, LGA, of Borno State recently seized by Boko Haram insurgents.
He gave the ultimatum while addressing troops of the Nigerian Army Super camp 9, Dikwa, saying “areas around Marte, Chikingudu, Wulgo Kirenowa and Kirta must be cleared in the next 48 hours.
“You should be rest assured of all support you required in this very onerous task. I have just spoken to the Theater Commander, and the General Officer Commanding 7 Division, you must not let this nation down. Go back and do the needful and I will be right behind you”.
There are also news reports that Nigerian troops successfully liberated Marte, killing scores of ISWAP/ Boko Haram Terrorists who laid siege in that area for some days.
A Military Source said that the troops successfully and safely detonated series of IEDs laced along the routes and finally dominated the general area.
“New Marte effectively in our hands since 3 pm. Our will and determination are unshaken. We are ever determined not to let our service chiefs and the nation down,” the source celebrated.
Meanwhile, before the liberation proper, the troops tactfully and successfully destroyed several mines laid on their paths by terrorists.
Finding by Nigerian Pilot reveals that apart from landmines, the terrorists’ infiltration of the civilian population in Marte prevented the military Air Task Force from launching aerial bombardments, to avoid collateral damages.
The troops de-mined some communities and villages on the major routes to Marte before gaining access.
Further findings also revealed that the General Officer Commanding 7 Division of the Army, Major General Abdul- Khalifa, applauded commanders and troops in that axis for thwarting the attempt by terrorists to takeover Dikwa.
While coordinating a massive military operation in the Sambisa Forest, General Abdul Khalifa quickly mobilized reinforcement from different military units to protect Dikwa.
He also led other troops immediately to the town to ensure the safety of the citizens and large numbers of IDPs from the advancing terrorists.
One of the Commanders that led the successful Dikwa Operation include the Garrison Commander of Operation Lafiya Dole, Brig Gen. Abubakar Haruna with fighting troops from Gulumba.
Another military source said that the troops, who were spurred by Attahiru’s marching directive, have already demobilized several mines as they pushed further in the axis.
“Our troops, more than ever before, are committed to dealing with terrorists in the North-East. They have since, after the COAS’ charge, swung into action, with a view to liberating Marte and some adjoining communities.
“The terrorists’ attacks, have not dampened their morale in any way. Troops in Dikwa have also not been distracted. At the moment, we are intensifying our intelligence gathering mechanism to uncover terrorists’ informants,” the source concluded.