In his bid to further boast troops morale and see things for himself, the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Nigerian Army, Lieutenant General TY Buratai along with some Principal Staff Officers of the Army Headquarters and Commanders, undertook operational visit to troops locations in the north east with specific emphasis on Sambisa forest on Saturday 17th February 2018.
His first port of call was Bitta, where he was received by the General Officer Commanding 7 Division and Commander, Sector 1 Operation LAFIYA DOLE, Major General IM Yusuf and the Commander 26 Task Force Brigade, Brigadier General IM Obot.
Thereafter, he inspected a Quarter Guard mounted in his honour by the Brigade and was briefed by the Brigade Commander on the performance of his command especially as regards Operation DEEP PUNCH II and clearance of Boko Haram terrorists out of their various operational stronghold in Sambisa forest. In his remarks, the COAS commended the Commander and urged him to keep the momentum.In all the places visited, he expressed happiness with the troops commended them for their resilience and excellent performances.
The Chief of Army Staff also addressed and interacted with the troops along with the elements of Cameroonian Defence Forces in the area. In his address to the troops at Bitta, he congratulated them for the clearance of Boko Haram terrorists.
He noted that Sambisa forest has been an impediment in the fight against terrorism and insurgency over time and their clearance of the forest is considered a major milestone in the operation. He further added that the President and Commander-in-Chief is very pleased with their performance. He also said that very soon the Nigerian Army would have more Mine Resistance and Ambush Protected (MRAPs) vehicles, Armoured Personnel Carriers (APC) and other equipment injected into the theatre.
While addressing the elements of the Cameroonian Defence Forces, Lieutenant General Buratai thanked them for their efforts and support and urged them to continue to operate along with their Nigerian counterparts to attain the desired result which is total clearance of Boko Haram terrorists wherever they might be hibernating.
The Chief of Army Staff who was accompanied by the Theatre Commander, Operation LAFIYA DOLE, Major General RI Nicholas, Chief of Accounts and Budget (Army), Major General JE Jakko, General Officer Commanding 7 Division and Commander, Sector 1 Operation LAFIYA DOLE, Major General IM Yusuf and the Commander 26 Task Force Brigade, Brigadier General IM Obot, Director Army Public Relations, Brigadier General SK Usman and Air Commodore AO Adole, Nigerian Air Force, Air Task Force, Operations Officer, also went round other locations into the heart of Sambisa forest. The areas visited include; Tokumbere and Sabil Huda.
In each instance, he addressed and interacted with the troops and also addressed some of their complaints..