Abuja - The Defence Headquarters has dismissed media reports claiming that terrorists were now in control of Mafa in Borno State.
The Director of Defence Information, Major-General Chris Olukolade, described the reports as false.
“The truth is that an attempt by a group of fleeing terrorists, who strayed towards the town and engaged in their typical suicide attack, was duly repelled by troops," he said.
Olukolade said the claim by some media organisations that terrorists chased out troops and took over Marte, another town, could not be verified as troops were busy elsewhere during the said attack.
He added that efforts to track the terrorists who were reported to have attacked the town had not indicated their presence as claimed.
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“Surveillance activities are however ongoing although there has been no indication of the large number of terrorists as being claimed in some reports attributed to anonymous sources."
Olukolade said the terrorists are "certainly" no longer capable of that level of coordinated action.
The Defence Headquarters also denied the report that troops had retreated from the Sambisa forest, said to be a lair for Boko Haram sect members.
“Troops have not retreated from Sambisa forest as claimed by same sources. Rather, the operation is progressing and gaining increasing momentum towards clearing all terrorists hideouts in the forest,” Olukolade said.
He advised the media to ignore fabrications being churned out by some alleged terrorists sympathizers trying to encourage the terrorists who he said were in disarray.
“The truth is that the operation to decimate them from Nigerian territories is progressing well. The military will not be dissuaded by the resurgence of false reports on the operations. The progress will be prosecuted as necessary.”
Mafa is a gate way to Maiduguri, the Borno State capital. Alongside Marte, it was one of key towns recovered by Nigerian troops before the recent elections.
- CAJ News