Borno state Governor, Babagana Zulum, has asked the federal government to seek the support of the Chadian army in the fight against Boko Haram and it’s splinter group Islamic State’s West Africa Province (ISWAP).
He made his request on Wednesday while hosting members of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) in Maiduguri, the state capital.
ISWAP insurgents conducted a scare attack on the governor’s convoy en route Maiduguri on Sunday, a day after they had ambushed and killed at least 18 members of the security team escorting government officials to Baga.
Spokesman of the NGF, Abdulrazaque Bello-Barkindo, quoted the Borno Governor as promising not to give up and that he would be more careful in his efforts to ensure normalcy is restored in the state.
“Zulum pleaded with the Federal Government to ensure that Chadian soldiers are invited to join the Nigeria Army in the fight against insurgency if any meaningful success is to be recorded on the battleground,” he said.
Last January, 1,200 Chadian troops withdrew after the end of their months-long mission fighting Boko Haram alongside the Nigerian military in Northern Borno.
The troops, who were part of the Multinational Joint Task Force instituted by the African Union’s Peace and Security Council to counter Boko Haram in the Lake Chad Basin, helped in responding to aggression from insurgents in the area.
Chadian troops also played a significant role in recapturing towns under Boko Haram in 2015. Their offensive in Northern Borno occurred simultaneously with those launched by the Nigerian military with the backing of new equipment, special forces and mercenaries from South Africa.
The Boko Haram insurgency has displaced more than two million people and caused the death of some 30,000 people since it broke out in 2009.