Nigerian Army has loss one of its key commanders, Lieutenant Colonel Muhammad Abu Ali, alongside four others, in an attack by Boko Haram insurgents in northern Borno State, northeast of the country.
A statement by the Army spokesman, Colonel Sani Kukasheka Usman, explains that the attack was carried out Friday at about 10.00 pm local time, “suspected Boko Haram terrorists attacked a 119 Battalion Nigerian Army location at Mallam Fatori, northern Borno State. The troops fought gallantly and repelled the attack, killing 14 Boko Haram terrorists.
“Unfortunately, we lost an officer and 4 soldiers, while 4 other soldiers sustained various degrees of injuries during the encounter. One of those killed in action, was Lieutenant Colonel Muhammad Abu Ali, the Commanding Officer of 272 Tank Battalion.
Late Colonel Ali was last year September given accelerated promotion from the rank of Major to Lieutenant Colonel for gallantry, and was decorated by the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General TY Buratai at Gomboru Ngala.
According to the statement, the troops have recovered ammunitions including, 1 General Purpose Machine Gun (GPMG), 7 AK-47 rifles and a large quantity of ammunition.
The attack is coming at a time the military is claiming successes in the fight against the insurgents – but of recent, the insurgents have intensified attacks on military targets, as well as suicide attacks.