The Nigerian Military have given information on how Boko Haram terrorists were able to kill over 70 Nigerian soldiers of the Operation Lafiya Dole on Monday.
According to elite military sources, the insurgents fired a rocket-propelled grenade at the truck conveying the troops from the rear, killing no fewer than 70 Nigerian soldiers in the ambush, in Gorigi near Allargano Forest general area of Borno State.
There had been contrasting reports from the military as to how many soldiers died in the attack, with The Nigerian Army Operations Media Coordinator, Col Aminu Iliyasu, saying on Friday that only 29 soldiers died in the ambush. Meanwhile on Tuesday, the Coordinator, Defence Headquarters, Abuja explained that 47 soldiers were killed while conveying bombs in a convoy during an ongoing operation, Ayiso Tamonuma, when the insurgents fired shots at their convoy and the bombs exploded.
But sources gave a different number of casualties and extent of the attack.
One of the sources said, “The terrorists got information about the operation from the villagers, so they laid staggered ambush for us and attacked our troops from the rear. When soldiers move like that, the rear mainly supports elements of the advancing forces while the main fighting force would be ahead.
“That was why they decided to attack our convoy from behind, killing many of our colleagues. They fired rocket-propelled grenades at the truck conveying them and because they were carrying bombs, the impact was much. We are saddened by the attack but we won’t give up. Seeing many of our colleagues killed hurts a lot.”
One of them stated that the terrorists always get information from the villagers who are mostly Boko Haram sympathizers.
Another source said, “The terrorists have strong intelligence because some villagers are Boko Haram sympathisers, so our movements are not as discreet as they should be. Besides, we are always in uniform so they see us while moving. When they see our troops moving, they notify the terrorists.”
“There can only be few reasons why villagers could do that and one of the likely reasons would be inducement,” he added.