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TheCable

Soldiers abandon duty posts over ‘lack of weapons to fight Boko Haram’ 

Soldiers abandon duty posts over ‘lack of weapons to fight Boko Haram’ 
March 04
09:36 2021

About 100 officers and soldiers of the Nigerian Army have deserted their duty posts around Marte in Borno state, military sources have told TheCable. 

Marte, Dikwa and other neighbouring communities have come under continuous attacks from Boko Haram insurgents in the past weeks. 

In February, the troops recaptured Marte from the insurgents. The victory followed a 48-hour ultimatum given by Ibrahim Attahiru, the chief of army staff. 

While giving the ultimatum, the army chief promised to provide the necessary things needed by the troops in the fight. 

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But military sources said the troops’ requests for reinforcement and additional weapons from the authorities were turned down, and they learnt that the insurgents were planning to launch another attack. 

“They deserted in protest, actually,” one of the sources said. 

“When the enemies attacked earlier, the troops were dislodged because they didn’t have enough ammunition to match those of BHT. But, the troops pulled the courage, returned and cleared that area, giving the BHT a run back to the bushes.

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“They were expecting that the authorities would send in reinforcement and more equipment for them to prepare against any incoming attack. But sadly, they didn’t see anything. Most of them got angry and left.”

Mohammed Yerima, army spokesperson, was not immediately available to comment on the development. 

In a memo, however, from the Operation Lafiya Dole headquarters, the officers and soldiers were accused of absconding from a defensive location during the Boko Haram attack on Marte and Dikwa.

“You are requested to declare the named officers and soldiers’ deserters WEF 19 Feb 21. You are also requested to cause HQ NAFC to freeze their accounts and apprehend/bring them under military escort to this Headquarters if seen within your AOR,” a part of the memo read. 

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Editor’s note: The picture used in this report is only for illustration.

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