The 5 Brigade commander, who was injured in the attack by Boko Haram on the 243 battalion in Monguno, Borno state has been removed from his post and replaced with another officer who addressed the dislodged soldiers on Monday morning asking them to remain calm and focused on the task ahead.
It is not known whether his removal has to do with the injury he suffered in battle or his alleged failure to prepare his Brigade well to fend off the onslaught.
Nigerian soldiers in Borno state had on Sunday faced three separate and daring raids by the extremist Boko Haram sect on three major towns, successfully repelling two of them, and losing the battle for one.
Military insiders said the insurgents arrived at about 2 am on Sunday, parking their Hilux vans deep into the bush, with their headlights on.
Soldiers of the Brigade, who saw the unusual lights, began to shoot in the direction of the vans without knowing that the insurgents had left the vans and advanced close to the Brigade headquarters.
Suddenly, the insurgents began to shoot sporadically. The troop of the Brigade, including those of the Multinational Joint Task Force [MJTF], who were camped at a school inside the barracks after they were dislodged from Baga, engaged the terrorists in a long exchange of gunfire.
The biggest fighting tank owned by the Brigade, known as Shika, killed several insurgents, and wounded several others.
It was such a long battle that the equipment, which provided cover for ground troops, suddenly ran out of ammunition and began to withdraw.
As it withdrew, the rifle men behind also retreated, as the insurgents followed in pursuit. In the process, the commander of the Brigade, a Brigadier General Yekini, and a few other soldiers were wounded. It is not clear the number of soldiers and insurgents killed in the attack.
The Director of Defence Information, Major-General Chris Olukolade said the daring attacks on Maiduguri and neighbouring Konduga by insurgents were successfully repelled by soldiers while officers and men of 5 Brigade lost the battle for Monguno.
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