Following the spate of recent successes recorded by troops against boko haram insurgents in the north eastern parts of the country, Nigerian troops have been put on red alert for any insurgents’ leader bearing the name of Imam Abubakar Shekau who is believed to be desperately looking for escape routes.
A senior military source however, informed that troops have been urged to try at all costs to capture Shekau alive so that he would face justice.
On at least two occasions now, troops have killed characters calling themselves Abubakar Shekau in videos but the insurgents manages to find other individuals looking like him and pretend that he was still alive.
The order to catch Shekau alive is therefore to ensure that it will no longer be possible to resort to the same trick.
According to sources, the rumour about Shekau’s invincibility is one of the factors that troops are afraid to confront the terrorists.
Meanwhile troop’s morale has been greatly boosted in recent times by arrival of sophisticated armaments and the decision of senior military officers to lead the war against terror directly which also influenced the change of some commanders.
An intelligence sources disclosed that some of the successes recorded in recovery of big towns in the North-East were due to deployment of new strategies, improved disciplinary measures, and sincerity of participating countries in the regional alliance and the acquisitions of latest equipment.
In the past, Colonels have led direct attacks in accordance with military tradition but because of the large scale desertions recorded, Military Generals then decided to directly lead the war and this has greatly boosted morale.
It was even learnt that many of the troops that earlier deserted have returned while others have expressed desire to return to the front.
Within a week of the massive operation, the troops have recovered Monguno, Marte, Gamboru Ngala, Dikwa among other big towns and several surrounding communities in Borno State.
The source added that “with acquisition of new equipment from various sources and the specialised training of the troops on guerrilla warfare, the military indirectly called the bluff of some deceptive western countries who are now trying to save face by claiming to work with our neighbours.
“The effective collaboration and mutual relationship with our neighbours is paying off as they now realise that inactions can pose disasters to their countries too,” he concluded.