Posted by News Express | 10 May 2014 | 7,517 times
The Director of Defence Information, Brigadier General Chris Olukolade has said that Abubakar Shekau, known as the leader of the terrorist Boko-Haram sect is more of a title than a name.
Olukolade spoke on “Shekau” in Abuja, during the maiden press briefing of the newly constituted National Information Centre, comprising the information officers of the State Security Service, Mrs. Marylyn Ogar; the Nigerian Police Force, Mr. Frank Mba; the Directorate of Defence Information Olukolade and the Director General of the National orientation Agency (NOA) Mr. Mike Omeri.
He also said that many of the information provided to the military about the abduction of the schoolgirls were misleading, adding that many of the information were concocted to unsettle the populace.
"Talking about the personality that has been presenting himself as head of that group, besides knowing the fact that the term Shekau is more of a title than a name, there are many issues around it that makes it still fake. I don't want to get into the details of that," Olukolade said.
He added that several pictures being circulated on the Internet were recycled for mischievous purposes, as he said some of the pictures were activities of what took place in Central African Republic (CAR) and it is being presented as a recent event in Nigeria.
According to him, the terrorists want to unsettle the populace with concocted images, and do anything that will promote fear. The phase we are in with them now, is to engage in activities that will make the populace so scared to the extent of almost losing confidence in government and its institutions and also targeted at a situation whereby the institutions of state will be so stressed and warn out.
“We want to assure Nigerians that the institutions of state are still functioning and still capable of assuring them their security, regardless of the activities of the terrorists," he said.
Giving updates on the search for the kidnapped Chibok girls, Olukolade said efforts have been more concerted in conjunction with Multi-national Joint Task Force.
"A the moment, we have two divisions of the Nigerian army infantry devoted on looking for these girls, and they are all operating in the nethermost part of the federation contiguous to various borders. There are also other military and security agencies located close to border location in the north and south. All our border locations have been activated to operate at their optimum in looking out for these children.”
He added that The Nigerian Air Force has flown over 350 sorties with a view to ensuring that not just surveillance but air patrol is sustained on a near 24-hour basis over locations that information has indicated as likely position of these girls.
"The facilities of the Nigerian Army signals as well as all the communication facilities of the Nigerian Police and all the services have been devoted in coordinating this search and ensuring that information gets back to the control post where all the operations are being monitored and guided,” Olukolade said.
In the interview with Washington Post, Douglas called for greater international assistance in the country's struggle against terrorism.
"The Nigerian government is doing all it can - everything in its power - in collaboration with its allies to ensure that our daughters, the girls, are brought back home," said Douglas, who was on a visit to Washington.
•Excerpted from THISDAY. Photo shows Defence Spokesman, Brig.-Gen. Chris Olukolade.
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