The Nigerian Army says Boko Haram terrorists have resorted to cheap propaganda to seek relevance, due to the obvious reality of defeat and their inability to carry out attacks.
The Director, Army Public Relations, Brig.-Gen. Onyema Nwachukwu, in a statement in Abuja on Friday, said that attacks had hitherto been the main strategy of the terrorists in asserting relevance in the eyes of the public.
He, however, said that fear had gripped the terrorists as a result of the sustained and well-coordinated military bombardments from both land and air components of Operation Hadin Kai (OPHK).
He said that the current tempo of operation had exerted so much pressure on the terrorists and their sympathisers, adding that only weapon available to them now was cheap and uncoordinated propaganda.
Nwachukwu said that the terrorists had lost the capacity to remain in the fight, leading to their recent surrender to troops in different locations across the theatre.
According to him, there are indications that their fighting capability has been severely encumbered by devastating depletion, with their remnants deserting various enclaves.
“They are leaving behind a few diehards that will undoubtedly be eliminated by the highly spirited troops of OPHK in no distant future,” he said.
The Army spokesperson said that the terrorist group used a propaganda video to portray a lavish lifestyle in their so-called fortress, saying it was a psychological strategy desperately deployed to attract impressionable youths and unsuspecting individuals.
According to him, a cursory look at the video revealed an amateur work of doctored old clips and images from different backgrounds, skewed with blurred
imageries that are incoherent and illogical.
“The incontrovertible reality is that the group is facing imminent destruction and extinction.
“Contrary to the false impression they attempt to project of a blissful life in their enclaves, the true situation in their evil enclave is one of hunger, disease, brutality, high level of immorality and the constant fear of military offensives.
“This is largely responsible for the terrorists’ turning in their arms in droves, as the gallant troops of OPHK are rendering their enclaves uninhabitable with fierce offensives,” he said.
Nwachukwu said that the terrorists were shying away from telling their target audience that their fighters and family members were currently surrendering to the troops in multitudes.
He said that most of the terrorists who surrendered to the troops lamented that the conditions in their enclaves had become too harsh and completely unbearable that they had no option than to give themselves up to the troops.
According to him, this is the reality of the situation that confronts every Boko Haram member, contrary to the make-belief and propaganda they conjured up in the video.
“The Nigerian Army, being a professional force, adheres to extant laws and international best practices, particularly the provisions that relate to a situation when an adversary surrenders.
“This informed the acceptance of some terrorists who laid down their arms and wilfully denounced violent campaigns.
“The Nigerian Army will, however, not hesitate to subdue unrepentant terrorists, who are still fanning the embers of violence in the North East,” he said.
Nwachukwu assured the public that the Army would continue to safeguard the territorial integrity of Nigeria, while promoting peace and stability in the West African Sub-region.
He advised those who had been recently recruited by the terrorists to surrender themselves and their weapons to the nearest military or security forces outfit or risk facing the might of the troops.