The Chief of Army Staff, Major General Ibrahim Attahiru has given a 48-hour marching order for the clearance of Marte and three other communities in Borno state.
Attahiru gave the order in Dikwa Local Government, the headquarters of the Super Camp 9 Operation Lafiya Dole while addressing troops on Sunday, February 21.
The order comes 24 hours after insurgents believed to be members of Boko Haram hoisted their flag in parts of Marte local government in Borno State, according to military sources.
“In the last few days, we have had attacks in your Area of Responsibility: it is now high time we get back and fight through and support our forces ahead of you. Areas around Marte, Chukungudu, Krenoa and Kirta Wulgo must be cleared in the next 48 hours,” he said.
“You be can rest assured of all the support required in this very onerous task. I have just spoken to your Theatre Commander, General Officer Commanding, you cannot let this nation down. Go there and do the needful and I will be right behind you. Ensure you do your job, and do your job well.
“They have presented certain issues that came up, sooner rather than later we would address; where there are no adequate A and B vehicles we would provide with these few remarks. I wish you well on the operation and I know the morale is high.”
Normalcy has since been restored in Dikwa as they were repelled by a combined effort of the air component and ground forces of Operation Lafiya Dole in a battle that lasted hours. The army chief has addressed the people to douse tension and panic among the civilian population while seeking their cooperation and support.
The attack on Marte came barely two months after the Borno state government resettled 500 households in New Marte.
Attahiru directed the immediate clearance operations in Marte and other towns harbouring insurgents in the Super camp 9 Area of responsibility. The insurgents repeatedly attacked the local government within the week.
The casualty figure for the attack is still unknown, but some soldiers injured from Marte have since been evacuated to Maiduguri where they are currently being treated.