•As Cameroon troops join Operation Lafiya Dole
By Tobias Lengnan Dapam and Mustapha Isah Kwaru Maiduguri
The Nigerian military said it paraded 26 suspected Boko Haram members, who recently surrendered to troops of the ongoing Operation Deep Punch II in Sambisa forest.
This is just the Cameroonian armed forces have formally joined Operation Lafiya Dole Theater Command a bid to enhance combat capacity of the Nigerian troops in the counter insurgency fight in the North East.
The Army Deputy Director, Public Relations, Operation Lafiya Dole, Onyema Nwachukwu, stated this yesterday in statement issued in Maiduguri.
It added that the ex-Boko Haram combatants surrendered their weapons to the troops in Damboa Local Government Area of Borno State.
“Following ongoing onslaught by troops of Operation Lafiya Dole conducting Operations Deep Punch 2 in the Sambisa forest, additional 26 insurgents have surrendered to troops of Operation Lafiya Dole.
”The insurgents who surrendered from the Damboa general area of southern Borno also submitted their weapons to the troops,” Mr. Nwachukwu, a colonel, said.
While parading the suspects to journalists, the Theatre Commander, Rogers Nicholas, told the terrorists that all Nigerians were delighted to witness their “penitence and abandonment of Boko Haram’s hypocritical ideology and futile struggle”, the statement said.
It further said Nicholas, a major general, was quoted as assuring the insurgents of adequate safety and subsequent participation in the federal government’s deradicalisation and rehabilitation programme under the auspices of “Operation Safe Corridor.”
He assured that no insurgent who surrenders will be harmed by the army.
The General further urged them to call on their contemporaries who are still putting up resistance and fleeing, to reject Boko Haram hypocritical leaders and surrender to troops nearest to their locations.
The statement also noted that a large faction of Boko Haram terrorists sects have been decimated by the troops of Operation Lafiya Dole.
On the induction of Cameroon troops into the Operation Lafiya Dole, the Theatre Commander Operation of Operation Lafiya Dole, Maj. Gen. Rogers Nicholas, led a joint team of Field Commanders from the theater and Cameroonian Defence Forces to formally receive and induct the Cameroonian troops.
A statement issued by spokesman of the theater, Col. Onyema Nwachukwu, added that the Cameroonian troops arrived Gwoza town, Borno state to join in the ongoing counter- terrorism and counter- insurgency operations as well as protect borders between the two countries
The statement noted that, while welcoming the troops into the theatre of operation,Maj. Gen. Nicholas charged them to exhibit discipline and professionalism in the discharge of their assigned tasks and duties.
It said the theater commander equally urged them to be courageous and display aggression towards the insurgents during operations.
“Major General Nicholas also admonished the troops to be obedient to instructions from their commander’s as their compliance with these instructions will facilitate the decisive defeat of the insurgents sooner than expected”.
“He also inspected the equipment of the newly inducted Cameroonian troops. The troops and their equipment were subsequently handed over to the General Officer Commanding 7 Division who is also the Commander Sector 1 of Operation LAFIYA DOLE”, the statement said.