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Nigerian Army Retakes Baga and Other Towns

News broke a few days ago that the Nigerian military were on the retreat as they had lost a major battle in Baga, a town in Borno state. Baga is where the headquatres of the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) is located. According to reports the military base was overrun by the Abu Musab al-Barnawi led faction of Boko Haram called ISWAP.

The insurgents carted away hardware and also disrupted some of the military supply line in the wake of their victory.

The news that the town had been taken and the military was in retreat was first broken by Sahara Reporters. However, the military denied the news saying that they were still in charge of Baga and the surrounding towns.

According to some of the other reports, both army reinforcements and the civilian JTF reinforcements were pinned down by ambush fire from insurgents.  

The military of course denied all these. There were no image evidence though to prove that the army had vacated the town though, although, reports said that the insurgence even led prayers at the central mosque in the early hours of Wednesday, 2nd January.

Sunday morning Daily trust reported that the military was moving hardware and soldiers in a large number to Borno state, in an attempt to retake Baga and the surrounding environs. Their offices were shut down by the military, it took the intervention of the president for them to leave Daily Trust’s offices.

According to recent reports though, it might seem that Daily Trust were right with the story that they broke.  There are reporsts coming in that the Nigerian Army has reclaimed Baga and the surrounding towns. The information came in via Ahmad Salkida’s twitter handle. Ahmad Sallkida is an investigative freelance journalist.

Brigadier General Sanni Usman, an army spokesperson also gave a statement as regards the army efforts in the area. The army spokesperson in his statement said
“In the determined efforts to wipe out remnants of Boko Haram terrorists that now goes by the appellation of Islamic State of West Africa Province (ISWAP), the gallant troops of the newly formed Nigerian Army Special Forces Command (NASFC), Operation LAFIYA DOLE, have given the terrorists that attacked troops location in Baga a bloody nose.”
“The triumphant troops, particularly the highly revered 707 Special Forces Brigade which is the vanguard of the great exploit, dealt the decisive blow that neutralised several terrorists along that axis despite prior warning to them by some unpatriotic elements”.

“The Special Forces commenced clearance operations on 28th December 2018, where they cleared Zare, Gudumbali, Kukawa and Cross Kauwa without any resistance from suspected terrorists.

“However, at Cross Kauwa, the unfortunate ISWAP terrorists made a costly mistake of raising their ugly heads. In professional fashion the troops exploited the situation to instantly and decisively neutralise the insurgents and captured some equipment.

“Though some of the terrorists attempted to infiltrate troops camp at Monguno, the gallant troops lured them and neutralised many of them and recovered some arms and ammunition”.

The army is at the moment rooting out these elements and driving them Northwards. Some military men have posted pictures of dead ISWAP fighters and captured rms on their social media.

We hope the momentum will continue all the way till the insurgents are pushed out of Nigeria.

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