Nigerian troops have started building a major highway to open up Sambisa Forest, the fortress of the Boko Haram insurgents, following the defeat of the terrorists.
The Theatre Commander of Operation Lafiya Dole, Maj.-Gen. Rogers Nicholas, said in Maduguri on Thursday that the road project was to make troops to establish total dominance of the expansive forest that has been home to the insurgents for years.
The military authorities have been making repeated claims that the nine-year insurgency has been finally crushed.
However, Boko Haram has repeatedly been packing bloody punches in communities in the northeast, the hotbed of the insurgency.
Boko Haram, which had been fighting to enforce a strict Islamic code in Nigeria, had killed thousands, destroyed the economy of the North East and displaced millions of people.
Nicholas, who spoke through the Deputy Director of Army Public Relations, Col. Onyeama Nwachukwu, said that the road would also link communities and deny the insurgents safe heaven.
Inspecting the ongoing rehabilitation of Gwoza-Yamteke-Bita Road in Borno, Nicholas said that officers and men of the Military Engineer Corps had started rebuilding roads and bridges, destroyed by the insurgents.
He said that the project was also aimed at encouraging the growth of social and economic activities as well as improving the wellbeing of rural dwellers.