Posers Over Shekau's Whereabouts
[LEADERSHIP.NG] Uncertainty has continued over the whereabouts of Sheik Abubakar Shekau, the leader of the Boko Haram sect also known as Jama'atu Ahalis Sunna Lidda Awati Wali-Jihad. Sheik Shekau is feared to have died sometime last year from the injuries he sustained after he was attacked in his hideout in Yobe State.

Security operatives told LEADERSHIP WEEKEND yesterday that Shekau, who relied heavily on propaganda in the past to advance his cause, had not made any statements in recent times, leading credence to the belief that he is dead.

Unlike before, Shekau has not claimed responsibility for any major attack by the sect in recent times, especially the killing of nine polio vaccination workers in Kano on February 8, 2013.

Security personnel said that Shekau's obvious absence from the scene led to the emergence of the relatively unknown, Sheik Mohammed Abdulazeez, who recently declared ceasefire on behalf of the sect, claiming to be Shekau's second in command.

Meanwhile, Nigerian Air Force (NAF) has refuted a report in a national daily that "democracy breeds Boko Haram," which was credited to the Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal A.S .Badeh.

In a statement yesterday, NAF Director of Public Relations and Information, Air Commodore Y. Anas, said while "the caption was catchy and no doubt capable of attracting attention, it was equally misleading and capable of sending wrong signals to the public about the commitment of the NAF to the entrenchment of democracy in Nigeria."

The NAF notes that while the content of the story was a true account of what the CAS said, the caption was misleading and injurious to the sensibility of thousands of service men and women who put their lives on the line every day in combating the Boko Haram menace.

"It is more curious that the content of the story is totally at variance with the caption. Furthermore, the NAF as a responsible member of the Nigerian Armed Forces and its commitment to the Nigerian project will in no way through its leadership condone the perpetration of any act of illegality in any disguise and by anybody," he said.

It is noteworthy that the NAF has played and will continue to play important role in government's efforts to bring peace in Borno State in particular and to other parts of the country. Therefore, the Service cannot in any way talk about democracy in the way portrayed by the caption.

Posted by: Fred 2013-02-17