We Have Defeated Boko Haram & They Will Never Come Back As BHT – Buratai
The Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General Tukur Yusuf Buratai has said that the Boko Haram terrorist group has been defeated by the Nigerian military vowing that ‘Boko Haram will never come again as Boko Haram’.
He explained that what is happening in the North East is the metamorphosis of ISWAP, Islamic State of West Africa Province, which is an attempt by a group of international criminal organizations to explore the loopholes created by the breakdown of law and order in some neighbouring countries to perpetrate criminality in the sub-region.
Speaking when children of several schools in Abuja visited him to learn more about book, ‘THE LEGEND OF BURATAI’, written in his honour and presented to the public on May 17, Buratai however stated that just as Boko Haram was pursued out of the North East, the current band on international criminals operating under the guise of ISWAP will also be chased and hunted down.
Asked how he copes with pressure of his office, the COAS said, “When I was appointed the Chief of Army Staff, I had the feeling that I will be the least controversial COAS. I had the feeling I will have excellent relationship with the media. This first thing I did was to call the then Director of Army Public Relations and I told him that henceforth, all our actions and activities must be reported and made known to the media.
“They had a right to know. It is the Nigerian Army. There should be no gaps in our operations in the North east or elsewhere. Before then, we used to have so many reporters in north east including informants for the terrorists who plant stories and breaking news some of which went contrary to happenings, with ploy to make troops unstable or demoralized.
“So we started reporting event and occurrence about the battle, attacks in the north east. We were breaking the news ourselves but this time, the real actions on the ground, not fabrications.
“We also commenced interaction with stakeholders for them to see and know the true happenings, which later opened their eyes to appreciating what we were going through and the heroic efforts of troops. We interacted with the NBA, Human Rights Groups, the Media, & others and the now understood our job better.
“I also took personal steps to ensure troops personnel fitness and agility particularly on the battle field by issuing orders for officers and soldiers to trim down”.
Continuing, Buratai said, “We also had pressures from International Organizations including Amnesty International who also found fault in anything we do.
“I believe they have hidden agenda which is best known to them by reporting falsehood against Nigerian military But by and large we set up investigation teams and found out the allegations they made were fabricated.
“We ensured rules of engagement were adhered to in all our operations and those who flouted them were dealt with according to the rules.
Asked to comment on the secret of his successes, the COAS said, “I never give up. Never retreat & never surrender is one of the secrets of my success. You must work hard and hard work eventually pays.
“All who aspire to succeed must be patient, must aspire and work hard. For children, you have to read very hard. I had a dream of becoming a soldier & God answered my prayer.
Schools present at the interaction ceremony included the White Plain British Schools, Abuja, EFAB International School, Gifted Hunira Arcade, Command Children School Mogadishu, Command Day Secondary School, Lungi, and Command Secondary School Suleija (Boarding).
On the book ‘ The Legend of Buratai’, the Army Chief said he has tasked the author, Dr. Abubakar Sani to prepare for volume 2 noting that it will involve some true live events in his life which were not captured in volume 1.
“The next synopsis of the book in volume 2 will capture real life encounters with Snakes both in Nigeria and abroad, encounters with ghosts both white, black and crawling ghosts, miraculous escape from drowning at the age of 8 years, encounter with scorpions among others”.
Going back memory lane, he said, in 1973 when I was out hunting with his peers, “We went hunting and a snake chased me. I turned to face the snake and the snake out of fear crawled away. I also remember one evening in Angola; I had another encounter with snakes. I have also had contacts with snakes in my bedroom and in the year 1996, I saw a snake in my staff car (official car).
“Maybe this is the reason why I own a snake farm” he added.
Earlier, author of the book, ‘The Legend of Buratai’ said over 240 students from various in the FCT were at Merit house on 17th May for the public presentation and launching.
“The book came about because children want to join the Army & military but they don’t have mentors or heroes to look up to. In other countries, we have ‘Chaka the Zulu’, ‘Zorro’ and other heroic literature for youths and school children.
“Here in Nigeria we are lucky to have people who can inspire our children, our future but they are not documented.
“The fearlessness & courage of Lt. General Tukur Yusuf Buratai, the COAS is something that inspires and children would like a character that is inspiring like him
The author added that one thing Gen. Buratai has, that is worthy of inspiration is his diligence, Commitment, meticulousness, humbleness and these are basic principles which the COAS adopted throughout his life.
Chief Launcher of the book, Alhaji Awwal Garba who was represented by Alhaji Tajudeen Yusuf said Lt. Gen. Buratai has done well for the Nigerian Army and the nation will leave behind a very big shoe to fill with his immense achievements in future.
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