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Boko Haram logistics supply syndicates, including loggers and charcoal dealers have been uncovered in Borno State, the military said yesterday.

Acting General Officer Commanding (GOC) 7 Division Brig.-Gen. Bulama Biu made the disclosure in a chat with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Maiduguri, the state capital.

Brig.-Gen Biu, who was reacting to the ban imposed on the supply of firewood and charcoal in the Northeastern state, said that intelligence report indicated that some dealers in Maiduguri were hiding under the guise of firewood trade to aid the insurgents.

He said: “Some of them are errand boys of the Boko Haram insurgents. They hide food items, drugs, petrol and other items beneath their trucks, and supplied them to the terrorists.

“We also found out that some of them are running businesses on behalf of the Boko Haram insurgents. They go deep into the forest where ordinary people could not venture; to cut down trees, burn and produce charcoal.


“This could not be possible except they are in agreement with the insurgents. We arrested some of them and they made quite revealing testimonies, we shall fish them out to put an end to their nefarious activities.”

The Gen. explained that the ban was temporarily designed to checkmate activities of criminal elements among the dealers and not to make life difficult for firewood and charcoal users.

He stated that the military had allowed suppliers from other states such as Oyo, Kano, Katsina, Niger and Kaduna to supply their goods under strict supervision of the command.

The army chief called on the people to support the military and other security agencies to end insurgency as well as protect lives and property.

On his part, Malam Maidugu Ali, the Chairman, Borno chapter of the Firewood Sellers Association of Nigeria, expressed dismay over the development.

He expressed the association’s shock at the allegation by the military authorities.

Maidugu said the union had engaged members of the Civilian Joint Task Force (CJTF) to support the military in the screening of its members before allowing them entry into Maiduguri.

He also said that the union had adopted measures to screen vehicles conveying firewood or charcoal to Maiduguri, to check suspicious activities among its members.

Maidugu disclosed that more than 60 members of the association were killed by the Boko Haram insurgents in the past 10 years.

He said: “Three years ago; we also recorded an incident when the insurgents’ hijacked one of our trucks and used it for suicide bomb attack, both the driver and his boy were killed during the incident.

“We are also victims of insurgency; we are strict in the registration of new members, any prospective person must produce two sureties before he was enrolled and engage in firewood trade.”



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