World, Africa

Nigeria removes commander of counter-terror operation

Commander leading operations in country's restive northeast 'redeployed' to army research institute

Olarewaju Kola   | 31.03.2020
Nigeria removes commander of counter-terror operation

MAIDUGURI, Nigeria

Nigeria on Tuesday announced that it had removed the army commander of its counter-terrorism operations in the country's restive northeast.

Army spokesman Sagir Musa said in a statement that Major General Olusegun Adeniyi was taken from command of the military operation and "redeployed" to an army research institute.

He said the move was approved by the Chief of Army Staff Tukur Buratai as "a routine/normal exercise for greater professional effectiveness and efficiency."

Adeniyi was replaced by an army division commander in the country's northwest, Major General Faruk Yahaya.

Some senior military officers told Anadolu Agency on condition of anonymity that the removal of Adeniyi was fueled by the recent killing of 47 soldiers and officers in an ambush by Boko Haram terrorists in the country's volatile northeast region on March 22.

Security expert Mike Ejiafor said the replacement could have been made for tactical reasons.

"It could be for tactical reasons, though the army didn't say so," he told Anadolu Agency from the capital Abuja.

Ejiafor also cited recent comments by Adeniyi decrying supplies and intelligence shortages in a video that went viral across the country. Ejiafor said the commander should not have revealed information about the logistics challenges troops were facing in the battlefield.

Boko Haram has claimed responsibility for most of the terror attacks in the country's northeast region for over a decade.

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