Military sources said on Monday that corpses of 10 soldiers, who were among the troops attacked during an assault on Kwakwa and Chingori communities in the Bama area of Borno State by the Boko Haram terrorists, have been found.
The Nigerian Army on Monday confirmed an “attempted attack” by the Boko Haram on the troops, but insisted that nobody died.
The Army Director of Public Relations, Brig. Gen. Texas Chukwu, said the troops “successfully repelled” the terrorists’ attempt to cart away military operational vehicles and killed 22 of the Boko Haram terrorists.
It had been reported on Monday that apart from the attack on Bama by the Boko Haram fighters, hundreds of soldiers also went missing after the insurgents overran their base in Jilli village, Yobe State.
It was reported that only the commander of the base, alongside 63 soldiers, were found after the terrorists attacked the base, having more than 700 troops. Others have not been found.
The terrorists, said to belong to the Al-Barnawi faction, also reportedly have links with the Islamic State West African Province fighters.
The army on Monday denied both incidents, saying its troops successfully repelled the attempts.
Sources, however, claimed the army was allegedly trying to cover up the attacks.
A source close to Bama, said, “The update is that 10 corpses of soldiers ambushed in Borno have been recovered. The army is still looking for the rest of them. The terrorists are said to have links with ISWAP and they are from the Al-Barnawi faction. The army cannot sweep these attacks under the carpet because there were eyewitnesses to the two attacks in Borno and Yobe which happened on Saturday and Sunday.”
But the army spokesman, Chukwu, said the troops repelled the terrorist attack on Bama, adding that only two personnel were injured.
He said, “The army wishes to state categorically that the report is not true. There was an attempted attack on troops at Kwakwa and Chingori communities in the Bama area by suspected Boko Haram terrorists as a result of the difficult terrain where our vehicles became bugged down.
“The terrorists also attempted to cart away troops’ operational vehicles, but were successfully repelled by our troops with the support of the Nigerian Air Force. About 22 members of Boko Haram terrorists were neutralised while several others escaped with gunshot injuries. Efforts are being intensified by the troops to get the fleeing members of the Boko Haram terrorists.
“Unfortunately, one officer and a soldier sustained injuries and are currently receiving medical attention at the military medical facility.”