Boko Haram has released a new video on the insurgency in Nigeria, with its leader Abubakar Shekau again failing to appear in it. His continued absence has increased speculation about his fate.
He was last heard from in March, when he released an audio message pledging allegiance to the Islamic State (IS) group.
Soon thereafter, Nigeria’s military said it had recaptured all towns and cities from Boko Haram.
In the eight-minute video, an unidentified young man spoke in the name of the Islamic State in West Africa calling on people to be patient: “We are still present everywhere we had been before.”
The video showed the militants attacking a security checkpoint, seizing weapons, and slitting the throat of a man dressed in a police uniform.
Shekau also failed to appear in a Boko Haram video released in June.
According to the BBC, this will renew speculation that he is either deep in hiding, or has been wounded and even killed.
Regardless of Shekau’s fate, it was clear from the video that some militants in Nigeria are still determined to fight.
The video is gruesome, but its production sleek, suggesting that it was produced with the help of IS-allied propaganda units, said the BBC.
The young militant spoke in the regional Hausa language, with an accent from the Kanuri ethnic group, to which Shekau belongs.
Shekau became Boko Haram leader following the killing of the terror group’s founder, Muhammad Yusuf, in police custody in 2009.
Previous reports about his death proved to be untrue.
He sparked global outrage when Boko Haram abducted more than 200 girls from a boarding school in Chibok town in Borno State in April 2014.
In another incident, members of the group were reported to have renewed attacks on border villages in Adamawa State and its environs resulting in the death of five persons in Madagali Local Government Area of the state.
The member representing Madagali in the Adamawa House of Assembly Emmanuel Tsamdu made the revelation Monday to journalists in Yola, the state capital.
Tsamdu said that due to the upsurge of attacks on the local council, the communities have been forced to arm and equip 200 vigilantes in the area to stem the tide of attacks.
He revealed that the latest attack launched on Kolbachuwa village, which claimed five lives, was preceded by other deadly attacks in the same council.
Tsamdu, who called on the state government to reinforce security in the area, said residents have been living in fear following the advancement of the rainy season, as insurgents were known to hide in the cover of the rain to attack his people.
He added that many insurgents were still hiding in surrounding mountains across the local government, disclosing that it was from these hideouts in the surrounding mountains the insurgents launched their attack on mostly farmers.
He maintained that many such attacks had occurred in Midigu, Lanssa, Immirsa, Kubula, Sabon Gari and Wagachakawa villages in the last five days, with scores feared killed by the insurgents.
Tsamdu added that the community had briefed the military authorities in the state and called on the army to hastily secure the areas to avert further loss of innocent lives.