President Buhari cancels trip to Sambisa Forest, to be represented by defence minister

President Muhammadu Buhari has opted out of going to the Sambisa Forest Nigerian Army Small Arms Championship on Monday, rather has delegated the minister of defence Mansur Dan-Ali to represent him.

Buhari was initially scheduled to declare open the Nigerian Army Small Arms Championship holding in Sambisa forest on Monday, March 27.

The minister of defence, Mansur Dan-Ali, will now represent the President at the event, Chief of Army Staff, Tukur Buratai disclosed this on Saturday, March 25.

No concrete reason was given for the cancellation.

Speaking to newsmen in Maiduguri, Buratai said Sambisa forest was chosen for the event to consolidate Nigerian Army’s grip on the area.

Tukur Buratai, chief of army staff, disclosed this on Saturday.

Buratai said: “We have been in the north-east, fighting the Boko Haram terrorists, and you know the significance of the Sambisa forest to them,” 

“It used to be one of their centres; in fact, we suspect that their command and control centre was located there before its eventual capture.”

He added that following the eventual capture of camp zero in the forest, the army wanted to consolidate its operations by ensuring that the place was secure.

“We also want the place to be dominated by our troops and also to get firm control, so that we will continue to dominate the area,”

“The Nigerian Army Small Arms Championship is part of the training activities scheduled for 2017,”

“It is a championship among the formations of the Nigerian Army.

“The objective of the event is to sharpen the marksmanship skills of the army personnel.

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