BOKO Haram leader Sheikh Abubakar Shekau has published a new Youtube video in which he threatened to carry out the mother of attacks on the Nigerian capital Abuja and lampooned President Muhammadu Buhari as an infidel.
Over recent weeks, there has been controversy surrounding the fate of Sheikh Shekau after the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (Isis) said it now recognises Abu Mussab al-barnawi as the Boko Haram leader. There had been suggestions that this might mean Shekau was dead but he has hit back claiming to still be in charge and threatening retribution against Nigeria.
He threatened fresh but more vicious attacks against Nigeria, even as he battles Abu Mussab al-barnawi the son of his erstwhile leader Muhammed Yusuf, to retain the leadership and control of the outlawed group. However, Nigeria’s defence headquarters in Abuja has dismissed the Boko Haram leader’s threat as mere rhetoric and questioned the authenticity of the video.
In the video released yesterday, Sheikh Shekau, who paraded several of his men, was quiet while one of his masked lieutenants read out a statement that reiterated their unflagging loyalty to him while denouncing Isis’ choice of al-barnawi as its West African leader. The 24-minute video, which was partly in Arabic and ended largely in Hausa, had the group issuing direct threats to President Buhari, the chief of army staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai and the spokesman of the Nigeria Army, Colonel Sani Usman, whom they labelled as their avowed enemies and infidels.
According to the veiled speaker, they would very soon attack the presidential palace and bring down the Nigerian flag. Sheikh Shekau said he has no intention of waging war against Muslims but threatened to carry out the mother of all attacks on Abuja.
In addition, Boko Haram group expressed angst and displeasure with the al-Bagdadhi-led Isis for recognising al-barnawi as its new leader in West Africa. It however failed to withdraw its loyalty to al-Bagdadhi whom they repeatedly referred to as Khalifa or supreme leader.