This a mounting fear that a large cache of arms including two gun trucks, communication radios and small arms carted away by the Boko Haram fighters duringbTuesday’s night that left 15 soldiers dead will further compound the war against insurgents.
“Large quantity of foodstuff were also carted away by the Boko Haram,” an official said.
Boko Haram has in the past weeks amassed large quantity of arms after attacks on military formations or during ambushes on troops, our sources said.
One source, a top military officer, was worried that the captured ammunition are those the insurgents will use in carrying out further attacks on troops.
“Sadly, the Boko Haram has amassed large quantity of arms, ammo and high calibre weapons from the army within one week”, the source said.
“These same equipment would be used against own soldiers and civilians. They brutally attacked the soldiers and escaped neatly into their hideouts.”
However, while the Sasawa attack is the most recent, military sources said it was the second such attack within one week on soldiers fighting the Boko Haram in the North-East.
On October 18, at about 12 noon, members of the terror group attacked an army convoy led by the Commanding Officer of 81 Battalion, a Lieutenant Colonel (name withheld), along the Damboa-Maiduguri road.
The soldiers were said to be on their way to Maiduguri from their base in Bulabulin.
This is as seven more bodies have been found after a Boko Haram raid on a militart camp in Sasawa village, some 45 kilometres from the Yobe state capital, Damaturu, a security source said on Friday.
Militant fighters stormed the base at Sasawa village in the third such attack on the military in two weeks.
The Nigerian Army has confirmed the attack and said only there were “casualties on both sides”.
But a military source said: “So far, 15 bodies of soldiers killed in the attack at Sasawa have been recovered, including that of an officer
“Seven more bodies were found in the course of search and rescue operations by 27 Brigade and 233 Battalion. More (soldiers) are still missing and their fate is unknown.”
The source, who asked not to be identified as he was not authorised to talk to the media, said Boko Haram fighters took away two pick-up trucks equipped with anti-aircraft guns.
According to the SITE Intelligence Group, the raid was claimed by the Islamic State’s West Africa Province.
That indicates fighters loyal to Abu Mus’ab al-Barnawi were responsible. IS designated al-Barnawi leader of the group last year instead of long-time figurehead Abubakar Shekau.
The al-Barnawi faction is known to have been operating just across the border in Borno state and has been blamed for a number of similar raids.
In July, 19 soldiers and 33 militia members were among 69 killed in a Boko Haram attack on a heavily armed convoy of oil exploration workers in the Magumeri area of Borno.