Osinbajo orders heads of the army and air force to relocate their headquarters to Maiduguri

ACTING president Professor Yemi Osinbajo has order the heads of the Nigerian Army and the Nigerian Air Force to relocate to the Borno State capital Maiduguri immediately in response to a recent Boko Haram attack.


Earlier this week, Boko Haram laid an ambush in Borno State killing dozens of soldiers and oil prospectors despite earlier reports that the sect no longer had the capacity to carry out this kind of attack. After an emergency meeting with service chiefs, Professor Osinbajo directed Lt General Tukur Buratai, the chief of army staff and Air Vice Marshall Sadique Abubakar, the chief of air staff, to relocate to Maiduguri.


At the meeting attended by all the service chiefs along with the minister of information, Alhaji Lai Mohammed and defence minister Retired Brigadier Mansur Dan-Ali, the acting president said there was a need for them to be at the military command control centre in the hotbed of insurgency. Chief of defence staff General Gabriel Olonisakin and Vice Admiral Ekwe Ite-Ibas, the chief of naval staff, were not told to relocate, however.


Brigadier Dan-Ali said: “We just finished a meeting with the acting president and the three service chiefs. We agreed that they should move back to the command centre again and see what are the things happening there.


“We have also agreed that we should get more surveillance devices, cameras that will be able to see distant attackers coming to the position of our troops. “Also, the period of the raining season is a difficult moment for us, so we cannot dominate the environment like what we do during the dry season but efforts are geared towards regaining our areas, so all these ambushes that are happening would be stopped.”


Upon assuming office, President Muhammadu Buhari ordered that the military command and control centre be moved from Abuja to Maiduguri. Boko Haram has renewed attacks since General Buratai ordered his men to capture Abubakar Shekau, leader of the sect, within 40 days, killing soldiers, members of the civilian joint task force and oil experts in Magmueri Local Government Area of Borno on Tuesday.