Director of Defence Information (DDI) Maj-Gen. Chris Olukolade
•As troops intensifies air strikes, defy land mines
The Nigerian military has completed the routing of Boko Haram from the strategic town of Baga, Borno State, which they lost early this year to the terrorists.
The Director of Defence Information (DDI) Maj-Gen. Chris Olukolade, disclosed this Saturday and therefore confirming THISDAY report that Baga was almost liberated, with little details remaining including mopping up operations.
Olukolade said that a large number of terrorists drowned in the Lake Chad as they fled the heavy bombardment by Nigerian Air force heralding the advance of Nigerian troops on mission to flush them out of Baga.
According to him, not even the strategy of mining over 1500 spots with land mines on the routes leading to the town could save the terrorists from the aggressive move of advancing troops.
He said: "All the land mines were skillfully cleared one after the other. Eventually, the resistance of the terrorists collapsed and the land forces finally stormed the town in the early hours of Friday.
"Many of the terrorists died while an unknown but substantial number of them fled with various degrees of injury, in the series of encounter along the routes of advance of the as troops headed for Baga".
Olukolade said that apart from the five anti air craft guns and the rifles captured from the terrorists, over 34 motorcycles and five vehicles including trucks being used for operations by the terrorists were destroyed in the course of the fighting as troops headed for Baga.
He said: "The troops finally began clearing the terrorists from Baga on arrival in the town early Saturday morning.
"A comprehensive cordon and search phase of military operation has now commenced to enable troops mop up arms and ammunition and also apprehend any terrorist who might be hiding in the vicinity".
The Defence spokesman said that the exercise will also determine details of the casualties inflicted or incurred in the course of the operations to clear Baga and environ of terrorists.
A similar exercise, he added, is being carried out in over 15 locations namely Gajigana, Ngaze, Ngenzai, Marte Junction, Mile 90, Yoyo, Kekeno, Kukawa, Cross Kauwa, Kangarwa, Amirari, Kichimatari, Borokari Barati, Kauwa and other localities where troops have flushed out the terrorists in the operations preceding the entry to Baga.
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