A former Theatre Commander of operation Lafiya Dole, Major General Ibrahim Attahiru, who was removed by the Nigerian Army High Command for failing woefully in the fight against Boko Haram in 2017, has ironically been compensated with elevation o the position of chief of army staff by president Muhammadu Buhari.
Attahiru’s tenure as theatre commander was defined by failures and a spike in terrorist attacks, culminating in his removal.
The BBC had reported in 2017 how the then Chief of Army Staff, Lt.Gen Tukur Buratai, had given Attahiru 40 days to capture Boko Haram leader, Abubakar Shekau, dead or alive. Attahiru’s failure to live up to expectations saw him being removed without any posting.
But it is important to note that none of the officers who later took up Attahiru’s office have been able to capture Shekau as at the time of filing this report.
Attahiru had in 2017 taken over the theatre command from Major General Lucky Irabor, who has been appointed now as Chief of Defence Staff. However, suicide bombings and attacks on military formations increased drastically.
However, less than a month after, Boko Haram insurgents attacked Maiduguri, the Borno State capital.
Four weeks later, a group of geologists and technologists from the University of Maiduguri were ambushed by Boko Haram insurgents at Magumeri area of Borno state. Twelve soldiers, who escorted the academics, were reportedly killed. Some members of staff of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation on the team were also killed.
Boko Haram has also, using four female suicide bombers, attacked Muna Gari, a suburb of Maiduguri, killing about 14 persons.