In January 2018, Nigerian Intelligence warned of a possible high profile Boko Haram attack in Yobe state.
On February, the State Security Service (SSS) repeatedly and urgently began to warn Aso Rock that a high profile attack was coming. It was very evident that there was going to be attack. There were real plots being manifested and the State Security Service (SSS) managed to localize where the attack will take place, which was in adjacent Damaturu
This report was made known to the Executive Office and soldiers were dispatched to the area of possible attack. In the morning of February 19, 2018 ISR aircraft and helicopter gunships were dispatched to Dapache, suggesting the government had gotten a fix on where the attack was going to take place and actions were being taken to secure the area.
Then at about 3pm something strange happened. Nigerian troops were suddenly withdrawn from Dapachi just hours before the abduction without informing either the police or the Yobe state government in advance.
Then at 5:30pm Boko Haram struck. A hundred and ten schoolgirls were kidnapped by the Boko Haram terrorist group from the Government Girls’ Science and Technical College (GGSTC), Dapchi. Shortly after news of the abduction surfaced an incensed Yobe State governor demanded an explanation on why the Nigerian army withdrew its forces just hours prior to the attack.
Oddly enough the Nigerian army remained silent regarding this complaint. When news of the abduction spread days could no longer be hushed up days later, the army made seemingly contradictory claims attempting to explain its withdrawal. The army claimed that it had withdrawn its forces from the town due to the absence of evidence of any Boko Haram activity in the general vicinity, and that at the time, it had formally handed over Dapchi’s security to the police prior to its withdrawal.
Yobe state governor, Ibrahim Gaidam was having none of that and blamed the Nigerian soldiers for having removed a military checkpoint from the town. The Yobe state police commissioner also strongly denied the army’s claim that his department had been formally informed by the army of the army’s withdrawal, and no proof of any such police notification was provided by the army. Then in a circus reminiscent of the Chibok abduction, officials began dishing out contradictory statements regarding the abduction.
First the Yobe governor stated that 94 schoolgirls were kidnapped from the school and that 48 had returned to their parents and that only 46 are still missing. When officials could not provide corroborating evidence supporting this claim, Bashir Manzo, the chairman of the Forum of Missing Dapchi Schoolgirls Parents said that 105 girls were missing. The police commissioner of Yobe, Abdulmaliki Sunmonu said that 111 schoolgirls were missing.
So here we see that just like the Chibok abduction the Nigerian government took days to respond at all, and then responded with several assurances that the kidnappers would be promptly apprehended, and that all of the girls would soon be returned safely to their homes. In what can best be described as a photo-op the Nigerian Air Force deployed an ATR-42 Maritime Patrol Plane, two Super King 350i surveillance aircraft, three Alpha jets, two F-7Ni fighter jets and Air Force Special Forces troops to help in the search for the kidnapped school girls,
On 21 March, the Federal government of Nigeria announced that Boko Haram terrorists had returned 106 of the kidnapped children, including 104 girls who went to school, one girl who did not and a boy. It’s noteworthy to know that all the girls released were Muslims.
The lone abducted christian school girl Sharibu Leah was however not released. Boko Haram issued a statement saying she will only be released if she converted to Islam.
The group dropped them off in the town in nine vehicles. Information minister Lai Mohammed stated that the release was unconditional. The fighters after releasing the girls warned their parents not to put them in school again.
The girls were greeted to a rapturous welcome while the lone Christian girl remained in captivity. Fellow captives said that the Christian girl Leah Sharibu had escaped from her abductors earlier but was caught and brought back by a nomad Fulani family. With all 104 Muslim girls released it didn’t take long for the government to forget about the remaining christian captive.
Then on 1 March, Boko Haram abducted three christian aid workers in an attack on a heavily guarded military facility in the small town of Rann, Borno State. Shaifuru Ahmed, Hauwa Lima and Alice Ngaddah.
Then in September Boko Haram issued a threat that Hauwa Leah would be killed by the second week of October, if government does not meet their demands. What demands? The public is not privy of that information.
Meanwhile, the distraught mother of kidnapped 15-year-old Leah Sharibu, Mrs. Rebecca Sharibu, pleaded in tears with Federal Government to ensure her daughter’s release, as the Boko Haram captors have issued a threat that Leah would be killed by the second week of October, if government does not meet their demands.
Madam Sharibu, who frequently broke down, said it is her desire that her daughter be released on October 1. As the ultimatum given by Boko Haram is drew close, and leahs father pleaded that something should be done urgently.
It should be noted that during the Chibok saga Boko Haram enriched itself via the millions of dollars thus far paid to it by the Nigerian government in the form of ransom payments for the release of the Chibok girls, all of whom are Muslims. The lives of those girls were precious enough for the Nigerian government to break its principle of not negotiating with terrorists and payed millions of dollars in ransom payment to Boko Haram with the full knowledge that the money will be used to kill service men and women in the frontlines.
Sadly on October 15, 2018 Boko Haram executed Hauwa Liman, an aide worker with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).
She was forced to kneel down, with her hands tied inside a white hijab, and then shot at a close range. In a short statement, Boko Haram said:
“We have kept our word exactly as we said, by killing another humanitarian worker, Hauwa Leman, who is working with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).