The Nigerian army says Abubakar Shekau, leader of the Boko Haram insurgent group, is in a “terrible” state of health.

Shekau Boko Haram Leader

The army said this a week after Shekau released a video where he taunted the military.

In a statement on Monday, the army said the Boko Haram leader is “not much of a threat”.

The statement issued by Sani Usman, army spokesman, said: “There is no doubt that the main Boko Haram terrorists group factional leader, Abubakar Shekau, is in a terrible state of health and not much a threat as he is now a spent horse, waiting for his waterloo.

“However, Abu Mus’ab Albarnawy, who has been busy deceiving and recruiting gullible persons especially misguided youths into his fold will soon be captured.”

Usman also said the insurgents’ tricks of evading air raids have been unravelled by the theatre command of Operation Lafiya Dole.

He said the insurgents have deployed special roofing techniques in order to avoid air detection and bombardment from the Nigerian Air Force (NAF).

“They resort to roofing their living accommodation and hideouts with a mixture of coated sugar and mud so that the roof will not reflect when there is sun shine,” the statement read.

“Decisive measures have been taken to deal with this deception.”

He added that “misguided persons”, particularly youth, are usually attracted to the sect because of the deceitful and erroneous impression that Abu Musab’s Albarnawiy brand of “jihad” and insurgency is “refined and genuine”.

“Both factions are terrorists’ organizations whose activities constitute crimes against humanity. Their nefarious activities run contrary to the religion of Islam,” he said.

“The faction has recruiters all over the country, especially in the north-east. However, their clearing house for such conscripts is at Potiskum, Yobe state. Efforts are ongoing to track those involved.

“In view of the above, the general public should be wary of these unscrupulous elements attempting to recruit more youths into their sect.”