In what can be considered a big victory for the Nigerian army, soldiers engaged Boko Haram fighters in a fierce battle in Bama local government area of Borno state on Monday, forcing the insurgents to beat retreat.
A resident revealed that Boko Haram fighters had invaded the town on motorbikes and gun trucks but troops responded immediately.
“The soldiers put up a very good fight in Bama today. Boko Haram men were outgunned; the terrorists who survived fled and ran away through the bush path they came from,” he said.
A military source said troops from Jakana, Minok, a neighbouring town, were deployed to support the soldiers in Bama and with combined efforts, they were able to overpower the insurgents.
It is understood that soldiers and Boko Haram fighters are currently battling at Benishek, a community also in Borno.
Timothy Antigha, chief of military public information of the multi-national joint task force (MNJTF) based in Baga, later issued a statement on the Bama attack.
He said the insurgents stormed a military base in the town with the plot to take the soldiers by surprise.
“What was meant to be a surprise dawn attack on Multinational Joint Task Force and national troops this morning became a nightmare for the Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP), as 10 of its terrorists met their waterloo in Baga,” he said.
“Specifically, at about 5:30 am (Monday) morning, ISWAP terrorists numbering about 30 infested troops defensive locality.
“However, vigilant troops spotted their approach and promptly thwarted what could have been an audacious assault.
“In the process, 10 terrorists, including 4 suicide bombers were neutralized. Others escaped with gunshot wounds, as blood stained tracks were observed.
“Additionally, assorted arms and ammunition were impounded from other terrorists who fled in disarray.
“Unfortunately, a soldier paid the supreme price; while 5 others sustained varying injuries and have been evaluated for medical attention.
“It must be re-emphasized that the MNJTF acting cohesively with national forces will continue to pursue courses of action necessary for the achievement of its mandate in the Lake Chad Basin.”
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