The Theatre Commander of Operation Lafiya Dole, Major General Faruk Yahaya, has issued a strong warning to Borno communities collaborating with Boko Haram terrorists to desist from it.
In a statement issued on Friday by the spokesperson for the Theatre Command, Colonel Ado Isa, the warning followed a meeting with components of the Multi-National Joint Task Force.
“We also wish to warn all groups or communities hobnobbing with Boko Haram/ISWAP to sever such relations or the military takes drastic action against such defaulters,” the Commander was quoted as saying.
According to the military authorities, the level of collaboration and support ranged from providing information and intelligence on troops and law-abiding citizens to logistics supply and trading with the terrorists.
The theatre commander observed that there are “obvious implications and the dangers of collaborating with Boko Haram/ISWAP terrorists and other criminal elements in the society.”
Benisheik, Jakana, Mainok, Magumeri, Gajiram and Gubio, all in Borno State were indicted in the statement for allegedly harbouring “unpatriotic and heartless criminal elements.”
The theatre commander attributed this to what he described as the high level of terrorist activities and general insecurity that results in casualties in those areas.
“Anyone caught will face the full wrath of the law as we will not tolerate anyone sabotaging our concerted counterterrorism and counterinsurgency efforts through collaboration with the Boko Haram terrorists,” he added.
The army authorities also warned to come out hard on any community or groups that support the terrorists in any way or act as harbour zone for them.
The warning comes six days after Boko Haram terrorists attacked Zabarmari community in Koshobe village area of Borno State and killed at least 43 rice farmers, a situation that renewed calls for the immediate sack of the service chiefs.