Some Borno residents colluding with Boko Haram – DHQ
Coordinator of Defence Media Operations Maj.-Gen. John Enenche said on Monday that some residents of Borno were colluding with Boko Haram terrorists.
He said that they did this by providing terrorists with information on the movement of troops, thereby sabotaging the military’s efforts.
Enenche spoke Monday on Channels Television‘s ‘Sunrise Daily’ while commenting on Saturday’s killing of 43 farm workers by Boko Haram in Zabarmari in Jere Local Government Area of Borno State.
According to him, the military uncovered information that showed that the insurgents were already living within the community and cohabiting with villagers before they struck.
Enenche said that villagers’ collusion with terrorists continued to be a source of worry to troops.
The defence spokesman stated that the cooperation of villagers was highly needed if counterinsurgency efforts must yield meaningful fruits.
“That has been our worry. It’s a concern to us. You need a guide, you need information. Will they tell us? That’s a question that we have to ask. Yes, sometimes. And most times, no. And that was one of the issues we have been ensuring to overcome, with civil-military cooperation activities, reaching out to them, even sending people by proxy to talk to them.
“Those are the things that have been one of the banes of the final success in the whole of this operation. Our patrols will pass through a route, in a village.
“By the time you are going, some people are looking at you. When you are coming back, the next thing is that you meet an IED planted on the road. And people saw them, they won’t tell you. So, that’s the area I think we are all working together as stakeholders.
“And it is not possible to force information out of people. It’s not possible, just like they say you force a horse to the river, but not to drink water. So, all we are trying to do is to build up their confidence in the system and encourage them that look, this is not good for you. Now they do not expect that this will happen, even those ones that they deceived, that they are preaching to them,” Enenche stated.