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WHO REALLY SHOT SHEKAU?: •Confusion over contradictory claims by JTF, Boko Haram commanders

By News Express on 20/08/2013

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Who realy shot dreaded Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau, whose death was announced yesterday evening by Lt.-Col. Sagir Musa, spokesman of the military Joint Task Force (JTF) in the troubled North-East state of Borno?

As reported last night by News Express and other media outlets, Musa, citing an “intelligence report”, said Shekau was shot by security forces during a shoot-out when soldiers raided a Boko Haram base at Sambisa Forest on June 30.

“Shekau was mortally wounded in the encounter and was sneaked into Amitchide – a border community in Cameroon for treatment... It is greatly believed that Shekau might have died between 25 July to 3 August 2013,” the JTF spokesman said.

He dismissed the video of Shekau released on August 13 I which he claimed to be alive and in good health as being “dramatised by an imposter to hoodwink the sect members to continue with the terrorism.”

The JTF’s claim has however raised fresh questions since leading Boko Haram commanders had earlier claimed to have shot and deposed Shekau. The claim of the Boko Haram commanders was reported on August 2 by News Express, quoting foreign news sources. News Express had reported as follows:

Details have emerged of how Sheikh Abubakar Shekau was shot and deposed as leader of Jama’atu Ahlul Sunnah Lih Da’awa Wal Jihad, better known as Boko Haram.

Quoting “several senior Boko Haram commanders including Shekau’s Chief of Security and personal bodyguard, Abdullahi Hassan”, the US-based Huffington Post said that Shekau was “shot in the lower leg, thigh and shoulder.”

The shooting took place at undisclosed time and place and was caused by Shekau’s obstinacy as the group’s new leader, Imam Liman Ibrahim, “explained that Shekau was given a choice of joining the peace dialogue with the Nigerian Government, forming his own sect or being killed.”

Shekau’s exact fate is not known but “a video clip recovered from a Boko Haram camp in the Sambisa Forest Reserve in the northeast Nigeria, raided by the military on May 16, shows Shekau limping, providing confirmation of reports he had been shot,” said Huffington Post.

In any case, Shekau’s reign, which began afer his principal – Boko Haram founder Imam Mohammed Yusuf – who was captured in July 2009 and executed by the police appears to have effectively ended, thus paving the way for peace.

Shekau had dug his grave when he in a video released in the second week of July openly repudiated a ceasefire agreement negotiated by more moderate Boko Haram members who have been in preliminary discussions with government emissaries since declared on June 26.

The group’s new leaders are reported to have sent representatives to the capital Abuja on June 25 to hold talks with representatives of the Nigerian Government.

Boko Haram roughly translates into ‘Western education is sin’. The group’s violent campaign to Islamise mult-religious Nigeria has killed close to 4,000 since it was launched in 2009. 

•Photo shows Shekau with some of his lieutenants. Both the JTF and some of his commanders are laying claim to having shot him.

Source News Express

Posted 20/08/2013 11:15:39 AM


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