A former Boko Haram commander has disclosed that factional leader, Abubakar Shekau, had fled the Sambisa forest and was now hiding in Mandara mountains, the state owned NAN has reported.
Abdulkadir Abubakar also known as Abu Muhammad, has been in military custody since he was arrested in June this year. He was speaking in an interview with NAN from his cell.
“I am co-operating with the military and I am ready to provide information on the whereabouts of Shekau.
“Shekau has left his enclave in Sambisa and moved deep into Mandara Mountain. I know the area where he is hiding and willing to provide a guide to the military,” he is quoted to have said.
The Sambisa forest, located in the northeastern Borno State, is the main hideout of the insurgent group Boko Haram. The Mandara Mountains where he is said to be hiding extends about 190 km along the northern part of the Cameroon-Nigeria border.
#BokoHaram: Captured insurgents’ ‘‘intel chief’’ says factional leader #Shekau weakened, has left #Sambisa, now hiding in Mandara Mts – NAN pic.twitter.com/3ywpSIS423— Nnamdi Obasi (@NnamdiObasi) August 28, 2017
The former Boko Haram intelligence chief was arrested in Yobe State which is close to heartland of the insurgency, Borno State. Abdulkadir also confirmed that two other factions of the group (Al Barnawi and Mamman Nur) were ready to hold peace talks with the government.
He added that Shekau was not willing to surrender or enter peace talks despite the counterinsurgency having weakened him. He stressed that Shekau was behind the suicide attacks on soft populations in the Borno State.
“Albarnawi has indicated interest to dialogue with the government to end insurgency and provide a lasting solution to the crisis.
“Albarnawi discusses this with members of his circle. And I can assure the government that he would cooperate to achieve peace.The two factions are willing to cooperate with Nigerian government to defeat Shekau,” he added.