The new security challenges that confronted the countries of the Lake Chad Basin Commission met with strong military responses from the commissions Force, the Multinational Joint Task Force. It has left indelible marks in the fight against Boko Haram.
The activities of the Boko Haram rebel group has had severe toll on the riverine population and countries of the Lake Chad Basin. Through massive and guerilla attacks they hit the population when they least expect. Over time, Boko Haram rebels have committed untold atrocities; they have destroyed state emblems, schools, markets, religious institutions and farmlands in the region of the Lake Chad Basin. They have stolen cattle, robe the population of their money and taken them hostage in exchange of ransom, they have forced them in to early marriages and used them as bomb shield and suicide bombers, they have sold them as slaves, have killed them and as if that’s not enough they have out rightly claimed responsibility of all these .
In respond, the Multinational Joint Task Force that effectively started functioning in 2015, mobilized its human, material and strategic resources and stormed the camps of this violent group by maintaining fix, continuous and deep fires on the sect in all the nook and crannies of the Lake Chad Basin Region. Each member country of the commission has the responsibility to guarantee the fire and logistic support of its troops. This has led to numerous successful operations with alarming results.
From 11th-14th February 2016, the troops of the MNJTF were at Ngoshe and on the 24th of same month they were in the town of Kumshe, all towns in Nigeria, closer to Cameroon border ad considered as the hub and the reserve base of Boko Haram. The Force was also in the Cameroon and Nigeria localities of Djibril and Zamga on the 10th -16th of March and in the Madawya forest in Nigeria just to name these few resounding operations. According to the commander-in-chief of the Force, other operations are in the pipeline to mop the liberated zones so as to create a veritable secured environment for the local population.
With support troops from Cameroon, Nigeria, Niger and Chad, the most recent operation envisaged by the Force is name “Amni Fakat” aimed at liberating terrorists sanctuaries located in the recessed islands of the Lake Chad region. The mission will take into consideration issues related to the environment, education, health, sensitization of the population as well as the protection of human rights.
Operations carried so far by the Force has produced satisfactory results as hundreds of terrorists have been neutralized, vast territories recovered, mass weapons destroyed and ceased, and thousands that were converted regained their villages and shun away from the jihadist ideology. The joint military operations launched by the MNJTF have greatly contributed to reduce the capacity of the Boko Haram sect. Today, the group is contented to carry out isolated actions in sporadic manner through suicide bombings. That notwithstanding, for the MNJTF to totally eradicate Boko Haram, the active collaboration of the population who are the main beneficiaries of the results is highly needed.