The Nigeria Army on Thursday said that it has killed the individuals originally identified as Shekau, the leader of the Boko Haram terror group as well the person who subsequently posed as his impostor. The army has therefore described as “a façade” videos of Abubakar Shekau released by Boko Haram.
Lucky Irabor, theatre commander of Operation Lafiya Dole, made this known to reporters in Adamawa state on Thursday. According to him, Shekau is dead.
“I can confirm to you that the original Shekau was killed, the second Shekau was killed, and the man presenting himself as Shekau, I can also confirm to you that few days ago, he was wounded. We are yet to confirm whether he is dead or not,” he said.
“They released videos to prove that they are still active, but that’s just a facade.”
This is not the first time that the army would pronounce Shekau dead, but the militant leader has been known for releasing videos to debunk the claims.
It will be recalled that the military issued a statement last week, saying Shekau was “fatally” injured in an air raid, a claim that was confirmed by President Muhammadu Buhari during his recent trip to Kenya.
In that statement, the army said, ‘In what one could describe as the most unprecedented and spectacular air raid, we have just confirmed that as a result of the interdiction efforts of the Nigerian air force, some key leaders of the Boko Haram terrorists have been killed while others were fatally wounded,” Usman had said.
“Those confirmed dead include Abubakar Mubi, Malam Nuhu and Malam Hamman, amongst others, while their leader, the so-called ‘Abubakar Shekau’, is believed to be fatally wounded on his shoulders. Several other terrorists were also wounded.”
The Nigeria military, apparently are reacting to statements credited to Obiageli Ezekwesili, leader of the Bring Back Our Girls (BBOG) movement, chiding the military for “triumphantly” announcing the death of Shekau on four occasions, while never managing to rescue the abducted Chibok girls during a rally at Abuja.