Governor Abubakar Sani-Bello has alerted of the presence of Boko Haram insurgents in the Middle-Belt State.
He laced his claim with recent security breaches in his domain.
“We have every reason to believe that we are not dealing with bandits. From the latest operation, the way they coordinated and planned the attack has also confirmed to us that they must have had some kind of training,” the governor said.
The governor’s claim was corroborated with the discovery of bomb mines, allegedly planted by Boko Haram in Shiroro Local Government Area, Niger State.
Chairman of the Local Government Area Suleiman Dauda Chukumba said security operatives have arrested some of the insurgents.
Chukumba confirmed in a chat with The Nation that the mines were discovered in the Galadima Kogo Ward of the council area.
Also yesterday, an attempted by the Islamic State of West African Province (ISWAP) terrorists on a facility housing some surrendered Boko Haram members in Damboa, Borno State, was foiled by troops.
According to the governor, the latest insecurity incidents in the state indicated that they were carried out by insurgents, adding that the mode of operations confirmed the reality of what is facing the state.
“So, we want to believe that we are dealing with some terrorist elements that may kind of having some alliance with the bandits or whatever, especially with the number of bandits increasing by the day.”
According to the council boss, the bomb mines were targeted at local vigilance groups and hunters, who have been on the trail of the insurgents and bandits for the past few weeks.
Chukumba said security operatives were alerted by some community residents, adding that some of the Boko Haram members were apprehended as they were caught in the act of planting more bombs after the security personnel went to investigate the tip-off.
He said: “We discovered some mines surrounding Galadima Kogo ward. We were alerted about this development and some of the people who were arrested told us that the bomb was planted by Boko Haram to destroy the security personnel who would be entering into the community.
Ckukumba added that the security agents have unearthed and detonated the Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs), adding that the development further proved the presence of Boko Haram in the community.
“This can only be done by Boko Haram. We were told that they came in uniforms and were seen by some members of the community,” he said.