Friday, July 31

Maj. Gen. Ilyasu Abbah named new commander of the Multi National Joint Task Force

he New Commander of the Multi National Joint Task Force, Maj. Gen. Ilyasu Abbah, on Friday took over the leadership of the body from his predecessor, Maj. Gen. Tukur Buratai, who is now the Chief of Army Staff.

Abbah said while taking over from Buratai at a brief ceremony held at Army Headquarters, Abuja, on Friday, that the task against the Boko Haram insurgents was not insurmountable.

The new MNJTF Commander demanded robust intelligence, logistic supply and administration to ensure effective decimation of the Boko Haram insurgents in the sub region.

He stressed that if the three basic requirements were met, he and his team had the capacity to change the story of the Boko Haram in the area.

He assured the Army high command of his readiness to performance his new responsibilities effectively in accordance with expectations and bring the Boko Haram menace to an end soon.

He said, “As an infantry officer, like the COAS has already said, I am equal to the task; it is a trend that I just went on sabbatical in the Military Secretary’s office.

“So I am back to the same terrain, and I think I am going to operate better there provided I have the three basic things that I need – capacity building for the forces, which includes robust intelligence, proper back-up of logistic and administration.

“Once these three basic things are there, I assure you, when we hit the ground running, the story will be different. I know that Nigeria is most hit by this menace but definitely, like they always say, whatever affects one affects all.”

Buratai, who expressed confidence in the ability of Abbah to lead the MNJTF, said several international organisations were making donations towards the operationalisation of the task force established to curtail the activities of the Boko Haram in the Lake Chad Basin.

He added that the Africa Union had received some funds donated by the United Kingdom and the European Union in support of the countries of the Lake Chad Basin, who were united in the fight against the Boko Haram.

The COAS stated that with the structure and personnel in place at the headquarters of the MNJTF in Ndjamena, Chad, the task force had commenced operation.

Buratai said, “The MNJTF, as it is now, has commenced operation. The headquarters has been established; the staff officers are there. With the change, when the new commander moves in to Ndjamena in a few days’ time, he would continue to ensure that the headquarters is properly established.

“The sectors I have coordinated have also come on board; and just before I came, the operational directive was issued, streamlining the task and responsibilities of all the sectors.”

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