Defence Headquarters (DHQ) says a high profile commander of terrorist group, Boko Haram, surrendered to troops in the past week.
DHQ spokesperson, Major-General John Enenche, said on Thursday, September 24, 2020 the commander surrendered to troops with his four wives.
The commander is expected to be enrolled in Operation Safe Corridor, a military-run deradicalisation programme that rehabilitates repentant terrorists and reintegrates them into society.
Enenche said troops arrested a Boko Haram fighter at Kamuya in Biu local government area of Borno State during one of numerous clearance operations on terrorists’ enclaves in Borno, Yobe, Taraba and Adamawa.
Troops also repelled terrorist attacks at Wajiroko in Damboa LGA, Borno on September 17 and September 20, killing numerous fighters, according to the statement.
Enenche had announced in a previous statement, also released on Thursday, that troops successfully killed more than seven top commanders of the terrorist group.
Terrorist commanders killed by troops include Abu Usman, Alhaji Shettima, Modu Mainok, Bukar Gana, Abu Summayya, Amir Taam, and Amir Kuraish, according to the statement.
The announcement comes on the heels of an ambush attack by terrorists that led to the death of Dahiru Bako, a colonel, and three other soldiers this week.
Bako ran into the ambush while leading a patrol to clear terrorists from the Sabon Gari-Wajiroko axis near Damboa, Borno State on Sunday, September 20.
The senior officer was wounded by enemy fire and was immediately evacuated to the 7 Division Hospital at Maimalari Cantonment where he eventually died on Monday, September 21.
Boko Haram has killed tens of thousands of people and displaced millions from their communities since the group’s insurgency escalated in 2009.
President Muhammadu Buhari slightly altered his rhetoric about the terrorist group during his address at the General Debate of the 75th Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) late on Tuesday, September 22.
The president had in the past claimed numerous times that the Islamic sect was ‘technically defeated’ and posed no significant operational threat to the country.
However, while addressing world leaders on Tuesday, he said Nigeria is still battling violent extremism from the terrorist group as well as from bandits.
The 77-year-old appealed for stronger backing from the UN Counter-Terrorism bodies and neighbouring countries to snuff out Boko Haram terrorists in the Lake Chad Basin, where they have based operations over the past years, and the wider Sahel region.