48 Hours Deadline: Troops recapture Marte… As rebels retaliate
Barely 48 hours after General Attahiru, Chief of Army Staff, ordered troops to retake Marte from terrorists operating in the North East, the Nigerian Army says the mission has been accomplished.
News of the fall of Marte which is located at the outskirts of Borno is coming as reports confirm there were multiple explosions in Maiduguri Tuesday.
There are indications that rebels who are fighting the Nigerian State may have used rocket launchers to storm outskirts of the State capital.
Although the exact number of casualties are not known, Channels Television reported Tuesday night that at least 47 persons have been injured while no less than 10 others have lost their lives.
Ground troops who retook Marte from the rebels were backed by air power, according to information that is streaming out of Borno State.
Sources close to the Nigerian military reveal several rebels were killed while soldiers on the mission removed lethal mines laid on the way by the insurgents.
A Professor of Sociolinguistics at the University of Maiduguri, Khalifa Dikwa who hailed the success of the Nigerian military said the attack launched by insurgents on the outskirts of Maiduguri was purely diversionary.
He called for the intensification of the military onslaught, saying that what was required is the joint collaboration of all security agencies in order to take the battle to the enemies of the nation.
In a related development, the Nigerian Governors Forum has declared that those who are engaged in kidnapping and insurgency are simply terrorists.
It would be the first time the NGF would describe the insurgents in such strong terms.
But the public perception of the danger represented by the activities of insurgents appear to have informed the position of Nigerian Governors who are speaking up on what is seen as the deteriorating security situation.
The Governors led by Governor Feyemi of Ekiti State said it was no longer the time to play the ostrich, insisting it was time for all Nigerians, including opinion leaders to stand together in the fight against home grown terrorism.
Meanwhile, former President Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida and General Abubakar, a former Head of State who took over after the death of General Sani Abacha, have been speaking on the situation in the North East and the North West.
While Babangida noted that with careful thinking and the application of tactical strategies the insurgents could be dislodged, Abubakar called for the return to an era when Nigerians acted as their brothers’ keeper.
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