Military arrests suspects as probe begins
BARELY 24 hours after the killing of 43 students at the Federal Government College in Yobe State, the military has arrested some suspects, The Nation learnt yesterday.
The suspects are undergoing interrogation in a designated centre, a source said.
Also, President Goodluck Jonathan has ordered the Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Kenneth Minimah to relocate to Borno-Yobe axis to supervise operations against the insurgents.
Gen. Minimah may coordinate “Operation Merciless” against the insurgents.
Besides, security agencies have launched a comprehensive probe into the killings, with their searchlight beamed on alleged collaboration between the Boko Haram sect and some locals in Buni Yadi town where the incident occurred.
The agencies are looking at the likely involvement of some politicians in the dastardly act.
According to the source, the suspects are presently undergoing interrogation at a designated centre. He declined to state the number of suspects.
“Normally in this kind of situation, we will need to isolate the suspects for grilling before we tell the public our findings.
“After the first round of preliminary investigation, the relevant authorities would provide details for the public,” he said, pleading not to be named because of the “sensitivity” of the investigations.
“Besides the ongoing air and land counter-attacks from troops, the mopping up exercise in Buni Yadi was still in progress,” said the source, adding:
“The town has also been cordoned off to fish out some insurgents who might have mingled with the people of the town.”
The source confirmed that President Goodluck Jonathan ordered the Gen. Minimah to move to Borno-Yobe axis to coordinate operations against the insurgents.
The source added: “There is going to be ‘Operation Merciless’ against the insurgents. The battle line is already drawn because the President, who is also the Commander-in-Chief, has ordered the Service Chiefs to rout out the sect.
“The Chief of Army Staff is expected to move to Maiduguri any moment from now to oversee the operation, which may involve a complete change of strategy.”
Meanwhile an inquiry into the massacre of the 43 students by security agencies has begun.
One of the clues being probed is the alleged collaboration between Boko Haram insurgents and some indigenes/residents of Buni Yadi.
“Some locals are suspected to be informants of the insurgents. For instance, the Boko Haram members attacked the Federal Government College a few hours after the patrol team shifted surveillance to the other parts of the town.
“There are suspicions that some local informants might have told them that the patrol team had gone on routine surveillance to other parts of the town,” the source said.
Responding to a question, the source added: “On a remote note, the security agencies are looking into the activities of some politicians because the attack occurred in a period when Governor Ibrahim Geidam flagged off a state tour to commission projects.
“It is being suspected that some politicians would have collaborated with some insurgents to perpetrate these killings to halt the inspection of the projects,” he said.
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