Tukur Buratai, chief of army staff, has charged troops to move deep into the bushes to engage and clear remnants of the Boko Haram terrorists from the north-east region.
Buratai gave the charge on Tuesday in Bama, after he decorated two officers and 63 soldiers with gallantry medals for their exceptional performances in the clearance operation.
“You must take this fight to their hideouts. You must go further, that should be the next stage,” he said.
“I won’t accept a situation where our troops are being unnecessarily killed or innocent civilians are ambushed on the highways or in some other areas.
“The remnants (of terrorists) that are roaming in the bushes and forest must be followed through. They must be identified and cleared. Don’t rest on your oars. We still have little to accomplish. You have done the greater part.
“We are moving to the end of this operation, but there are still more tasks to be accomplished. It requires perseverance and discipline, so, let us work harder and clear these criminals.”
Buratai moved to the theare command of Operation Lafiya Dole in Maiduguri, after Acting President Yemi Osinbajo ordered service chiefs to relocate to Borno to take charge of operations, following renewed Boko Haram attacks.
Buratai, who relocated in compliance with the directive, had been visiting troops in the front line to boost their morale.
He congratulated the recipients of the award and reminded soldiers fighting the terrorists that they were rendering national service to keep Nigeria united.
The army chief urged the troops to replicate the feat achieved by the awardees and assured them of their welfare.