6 October, 2014
by Kabiru R. Anwar,
Nigerian security forces are reported to have entered Bazza and Michika towns in Adamawa State to retrieve them from Boko Haram stranglehold, Daily Trust learnt in Yola yesterday.
A top security source told our correspondent that soldiers had taken over control of the two towns following a Saturday night offensive, pushing out the insurgents who gave little resistance. Bazza, Michika, Gulak and Madagali had been under Boko Haram control for the past month, forcing thousands of residents to flee to Yola and other towns in Adamawa and other states.
“The military took control of Bazza and Michika in the night with little or no resistance from Boko Haram fighters. Election is fast approaching and from what I see, voters from that area may cast their votes in their homes,” the source said.
Saleh Johny, a resident of Uba-Gaya, a few kilometers from Michika, said residents saw a massive movement of troops towards Bazza and Michika on Saturday and heard several explosions thereafter throughout the night.
The chairman of Michika LGA, Vandi Pavanza, however said he had not been officially briefed on the development. “I heard about it but not officially, the fact is that I have been displaced from Michika.I am not in Michika so I don’t want to talk about something I am not sure of because I don’t want to tell lies”, he said.
A community leader in the area, Dr. Caleb Filli, said reports about retaking Michika and Bazza had reached displaced residents who were eager to return home.”From what we heard, soldiers are in Michika.It is a welcome development because we need peace to achieve development. You can see that economic activities have crumbled. People of the area have been away for 21 days. With this progress, people will to go back to their homes, farmers will go back to their farms and students will go back to school”, he said.
Military authorities in Yola could not be reached before press time.