Boko Haram terrorists have reportedly seized no fewer than 15 armoured personnel carriers and tanks purchased for Nigerian Army in 2020 under the former Chief of Army Staff, Lt Gen Tukur Buratai.
The armours were bought from the $1 billion fund released by the Federal Government.
According to SaharaReporters, at least four countries supplied the APCs to the Nigerian Army in 2020 which were China, South Korea, United Arab Emirates and South Africa.
It was gathered that about 21 armoured carriers were ordered between 2018 and 2019 when the $1 billion fund from the Excess Crude Account was approved and released to the military to aid the counter-insurgency war in the North-East.
The news platform noted that Buratai deployed some of the funds to obtain the APCs from the four countries – although the arms ended up being stolen or destroyed by the Boko Haram terrorists the same year.
On Wednesday, the breakdown of the 21 APCs ordered between 2018 and 2020 showed that, “Nigeria ordered six VT-4 and ZTL-09 armoured tanks from China in 2019 and the six were supplied in 2020. Nigeria ordered three Marauder APCs from South Africa in 2018 and the three were supplied in 2019. Nigeria ordered five KLTV-181 armoured carriers from South Korea in 2020 and the five came in 2020.”
“Finally, Nigeria ordered eight Phantom-2 armoured carriers from the United Arab Emirates in 2020 and the eight were supplied in 2020.”
Sources in the army said about 15 of the APCs have been stolen by the insurgents.
“Most of the APCs were stolen by the Boko Haram during various operations in 2020. The terrorists knew through informants in the army that new ammunition came and so, they intensified attacks on military bases. The army under Buratai was already distressed, politicised and everyone was an informant,” a top source in the army revealed.
“In December 2020, we lost some of them to the Islamic State West Africa Province’s fighters. We lost the South Korea’s KLTV-181 military tactical-utility vehicle which were designed and manufactured by Kia Motors Corporation,” he further explained.
Recall that the National Security Adviser, Maj-Gen Babagana Monguno (retd,), last week claimed that the fund released for the purchase of arms to fight against security issues affecting the country is missing.
Monguno, however, recanted and claimed that he was misquoted.
In an interview he granted to the BBC Hausa, Monguno had said, “Mr President is going to investigate those funds. As we are talking with you at present, the state governors, the Governors Forum have started raising questions in that direction. $1 billion has been released, and that has been released, and nothing seems to be changing. So I assure you that the president will not take this lightly.”
“The funds are nowhere to be found and the weapons have not been seen and the newly appointed service chiefs have declared that they have not seen the weapons.”