Just as the Federal Government is taking concrete steps to put an end to insurgency by radical Islamist sect – Boko Haram, a new insurgent group known as Nassiruddeen Li Ahlil Jihad Alal Kitab Was Sunnah, or Islamic Victors Committed to Qur’an and Sunnah, yesterday claimed that it had in its possession, a large cache of weapons following its attack on military barracks in Munguno, Borno State recently.
Abu Muhammed Ibn Muhammed Abubakar Al-Shakawi, who claims to be head of the new group, in a YouTube message, said that the displayed weapons were hauled from the military barracks sacked by adherents of the group.
Sounding agitated and looking visibly excited, Al-Shakawi made hand gestures in the clip as he was being cheered on by his followers, who shouted “Allahu Akbar”, meaning “God is great”, and showed off the cache of arms and ammunition.
The footage showed several M16 rifles, AK-47 rifles, rocket launchers, boxes of ammunition, various sizes of bullets and other assorted weapons.
The sect’s leader estimated that there were about 30,000 pieces of Ak-47 bullets on display.
“We thank God who gave us the wisdom and ability to uplift his religion. I bring you good tidings from our escapade at Munguno where, with God’s guidance, we were able to subdue the soldiers and drive them away,” Al-Shakawi explained.
“This is indeed a great success. We are very happy with the development. We burnt the premises and they (the soldiers) took to their heels, so we carted away these guns and ammunition. This is indeed a great feat that we accomplished.”
Although it is unclear whether the attack was carried out by Ahlil Jihad, there is a semblance between Al-Shakawi’s claims and the March 3 attack during which JTF spokesperson, Lt. Col. Sagir Musa said 20 of the attackers were killed.
But in the film, which appears to show the sect on a wide expanse of desert, the weapons al-Shakawi claimed they took from the soldiers were scattered on the ground while he debunked the claim by the JTF that 20 insurgents were killed.
Al-Shakawi, who was dressed in army fatigue uniform along with his followers, said: “Peace be unto you my co-Jihadist. I thank Allah once again for giving us this opportunity. God has blessed us with arms and we are very happy because we went there (the barracks) to test their ability and they (the soldiers) ran away.”
“This is just the beginning,” he continued, directing the camera man to capture the guns, “even though I will not give details of how many we have got.”
He urged his viewers to take a closer look at the weapons and decide for themselves how many guns were there. He corroborated one of his followers who shouted that the army claimed they killed 20 of them, but said they were not killed but martyred.
“I want to categorically state that the claim of the soldiers that they killed 20 of us is a fabrication. Some of us were martyred, but those who were martyred are not up to 20.”
Ahlil Jihad is the third known belligerent sectarian group that has emerged since the beginning of the current spate of violence began in 2001.The second group that sprang up was the Ansarul Musliminafi Biladil Sudan