|Brig.-Gen. Rabe Abubakar|
The Defence Headquarters, Abuja, on Sunday, said the troops of the Nigerian Army were close to rescuing other Boko Haram captives in the Sambisa Forest, including the Chibok girls.
The Director, Defence Information, Brig.-Gen. Rabe Abubakar, said this in an exclusive interview, adding that whether the Chibok girls were still in Sambisa or not was information meant only for the military.
He noted that the rescue of the girls and other victims was the most important thing to the general public.
He said, “We should allow for calm in this operation, which is still ongoing. We have yet to come to point zero. We have taken over the heart and the centre of Sambisa.
“The operation will culminate with Operation Rescue Finale which will end only when all the captives, including the Chibok girls have been rescued, and this would be soon.
“There are things we want to keep to ourselves for now. Everyone should understand that now that Sambisa is under the control of the military, there will be more rescues. We cannot say what will jeopardise the rescue operations of the troops.”
When asked whether Sambisa would become a settlement for people, the DDI said the military had yet to make a decision.
“What we will do with Sambisa is still left with us. “We have completely left that as a secret. It is our secret. People shouldn’t preempt us,” he added.
On Sunday, the Minister of Defence and other service chiefs were in Mafa, Borno State, to see troops in the frontlines.
The visit, according to the MOD, was to reopen the roads in Borno State which had hitherto been shut due to Boko Haram activities.
Meanwhile, the BringBackOurGirls coalition said it was monitoring the situation, noting that the takeover of the ‘Camp Zero’ in the Sambisa Forest by the military was a welcome development.
A member of the group, Abdulahi Abubakar, noted that it was aware that President Buhari admonished the troops to locate and rescue the remaining girls.
“The takeover of the Boko Haram camp is a welcome development. We support President Buhari’s charge to the military about the rescue of our remaining Chibok girls,” the former BBOG spokesman said.