At least three soldiers and two members of the Civilian Joint Task Force were killed while others wounded in an ambush coordinated by Boko Haram insurgents at Ja’alta along Gajiram-Monguno road on Saturday.
The convoy comprising of Military personnel and members of the Civilian Joint Task Force(CJTF), were on their way to their base in Baga in Kukawa Local Government Area, when they came under heavy attack by Boko Haram faction of the ISWAP in five gun trucks.
The attack came some hours after Governor Babagana Zulum visited Baga on a working visit where he supported the newly resettled Baga Community with food items.
A Civilian Joint Task Force who escaped the ambush told PRNigeria that a heavy fight ensued with the terrorist for more than one hour as the military send reinforcement where some terrorist were killed.
“The insurgents shot two of our civilian Joint Task Force and three soldiers. Several others were wounded including one inside my truck. The troops of Sector 3 Headquarters from Monguno were quickly deployed in repelling the ambush and killed some of the terrorists.
“We are not part of the Governor’s entourage. You know the Civilian JTF were newly enlisted to join the military in the front line by complimenting their efforts to fight Boko Haram. So we were returning to our base when we fall into the ambush.
PRNigeria also learnt that the Governor’s entourage comprising of senior government officials and security advanced team had arrived Baga town at about 10 am on Saturday while the governor was flown into the town with a helicopter for the official visit.
Meanwhile, the state government has denied a media report on an attack on the convoy of Governor Babagana Zulum.
The governor’s spokesperson, Malam Isa Gusau, in a statement issued on Sunday, said Zulum travelled to Baga and spent a day supervising the distribution of food and other relief to thousands of residents and returned to Maiduguri safely with no hitch whatsoever.
“For the record, we write to quickly clarify that contrary to a “breaking news” by an online news medium, Governor Babagana Umara Zulum was neither attacked nor was any component of his convoy attacked by anyone.
“The governor was actually in Baga from Saturday to Sunday, during which he supervised the distribution of food and cash support to 5,000 residents and he assessed major reconstruction and resettlement efforts with no hitch whatsoever. While we continually accord respect to all media organizations as supportive partners, we importantly clarify that we have no knowledge of the ‘breaking news’ in question.
But sources while speaking to Global Sentinel insist there was an attack on the convoy but the government is trying to downplay it so as not to jeopardize ongoing efforts to relocate the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) back to their communities.