Senator Ali Ndume (APC-Borno South) has revealed that fighters of the Islamic State in West Africa Province, ISWAP, rammed a bomb-laddened car into the convoy of Brig-Gen. Dzarma Zirkusu.
We had earlier reported that Brigadier-General Dzarma Zirkusu, a Commander of the Army’s Special Forces was killed by ISWAP terrorists in an ambush attack which also resulted in the death of other soldiers.
The terrorists had launched an attack against a military base in Askira/Uba LGA of Borno State.
Though troops of Joint Task Force, North East ‘Operation Hadin Kai’ also killed several of ISWAP terrorists during the clash that ensued, some military operatives paid the supreme price in the defence of their nation.
The incident was confirmed in a statement to newsmen by the Director, Army Public Relations, Brig-Gen Onyema Nwachukwu.
Speaking to newsmen on Sunday while reacting to the attack, Ndume, the Chairman, Senate Committee on Army, said the late General Zirkusu had become a problem for the terrorists group hence their need to take him out.
He stated that the Nigerian Army have been able to take out top commanders of the Boko Haram faction in recent times.
Ndume, however, pointed out that the intensity of the attack on Askira was worrisome, urging other security agencies to give the Nigerian Army the needed support.
“I want to express my condolences to the Nigerian Army over the death of the General who died along Chibok road,” Ndume said.
“ISWAP terrorists attacked a town there. They know that the General was the major obstacle to their operation. They laid an ambush and rammed a bomb-laddened car into his vehicle.
“He was a gallant soldier. He took the fight to the terrorists. His death has sent panic to people in that area.
“I am aware that some people around that Chibok area have started thinking of relocating.
“Some want to go to Mubi and other places. We are trying to urge them to remain there. The insurgency is coming to an end.
“This is not the end, but the beginning of the end of terrorists. I know that the Army has what it takes to take the fight to them.
“There is a need to urge other security agencies to give the Army the needed support. We also need to urge vigilante groups to assist them.
“For now, we will assume that it was an isolated case. But the intensity with which they came is worrisome.
“They came with more than 10 gun trucks. They are also regrouping around Borno North. That’s the Lake Chad axis.
“The military is aware and the Air Force is providing surveillance in the area. It was a revenge mission. The Army has been taking out key ISWAP commanders and they had their revenge.
“Last week, for instance, they abducted relatives of the Emir of Askira. They also abducted some passengers along that road. If the Army sustains the temple, we will win this insurgency.
“The equipments are arriving gradually. We are monitoring. As a committee, we will go and see what had been brought into the country.
“This is an improvement. The Army is very rapid in responding. The Army is involved in about 33 states now. They’re under pressure.”