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Press Review

Weekly Press Review: From Monday 14th to Friday 18th August, 2023

18 August 2023
Reading time: 13 minutes

Regional News

Farmers tell of the horrors they endured after being kidnapped by insurgents. Source: RNI

“It was terrifying. The insurgents were hitting me with a cutlass. I had wounds on my hands and head. I was lucky to survive. They told me they would release me only if they got their ransom of ₦400,000 and food worth ₦10,000. I did not believe I would make it out alive.”

As crime rate escalates, ordinary people are becoming more distrustful of surrendered penitent insurgents. Source: RNI

Many Borno State citizens blame the recent surge of horror crimes – murders, kidnappings for ransom and gruesome attacks on farmers – on “repentant” insurgents who surrendered to the government but have since returned to their renegade ways.

Military Troops Rescue 82 Abducted Civilians, Kill 28 Terrorists in N/West, Central. Source: PRNigeria

The Defence Headquarters (DHQ) on Thursday, said the military operations across the country have killed 28 terrorists, arrested 106 criminals, and rescued 82 within 2 weeks. He said during the operation, troops also rescued 82 kidnapped hostages and denied oil theft of the sum of Eight Hundred and Seventy-Six Million Four Hundred and Fifty-One Thousand Eight Hundred Naira (N876,451,800.00) only.

82 B/Haram Fighters Killed In Inter-Ethnic Clash In Borno. Source: Daily Trust

The incident happened in Kukawa Local Government Area of Borno State.

West African bloc meets on Niger as AU rebuffs military move. Source: rfi

Defence leaders from West Africa’s Ecowas bloc are meeting in Ghana on Thursday to discuss a potential military intervention in Niger, whose president was ousted in a coup. The talks come amid disagreement between African countries over the idea of foreign military action, after Ecowas said it would prepare a standby force to restore order in Niger.

ECOWAS defence chiefs declare readiness to invade Niger. Source: The Guardian

The stormy clouds of war are gathering ominously over the dreary landscape of the Sahel after troops of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) yesterday stated its readiness to participate in a standby force that is preparing to intervene in the Republic of Niger. This is coming after a raft of trade and financial sanctions already applied since the July 26 military takeover failed to make the coup leaders succumb.

West African bloc says ‘we are going into Niger’ if all else fails. Source: Reuters

The West African bloc ECOWAS stands ready to intervene militarily in Niger should diplomatic efforts to reverse a coup there fail, a senior official told army chiefs who were meeting in Ghana on Thursday to discuss the details of a standby force.

Terrorists Kill 17 Niger Republic Soldiers, Injure 20 In Fresh Clash Near Mali Border. Source: Sahara Reporters

This was disclosed in a statement released by the country’s Defence Ministry, adding that another 20 soldiers were injured during the clash near the town of Koudougou.

At least 36 Nigerian soldiers killed in ambush, helicopter crash. Source: Reuters

At least 36 Nigerian soldiers were killed in two attacks during operations against armed gangs in the northern-central state of Niger, the military said on Thursday.

26 Nigeria troops killed in ambush, rescue helicopter crashes, say military sources. Source: news24

At least 26 members of the Nigerian security forces were killed and eight wounded in an ambush by gunmen in central Nigeria late on Sunday, two military sources told AFP.

A deadly week in Borno State. Source: RNI

It has been a deadly week in Borno State with 18 citizens and one soldier being killed by suspected members of the Jamā’at Ahl as-Sunnah lid-Da’way Wa’l-Jihād (JAS).

Niger Coup: ISWAP Migrating From Sahel To Lake Chad, North West. Source: Daily Trust

A large group of ISWAP are moving out of their base in the Sahel and Niger Republic to the fringes of Lake Chad and North West, a top security source told Daily Trust on Tuesday.

Niger Coup: On Russian Mercenaries, NATO Forces and Looming Proxy Wars in ECOWAS. Source: PRNIgeria

The hurriedly declared resolution of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) to deploy troops to restore democracy and reinstate the ousted President Mohamed Bazoum of Niger Republic, after the military takeover of power on the 26th of July, might have been influenced by the need to avoid foreign interventions that could lead to the kinds of destruction and agony evident in Syria, Yemen, Libya, Sudan, and elsewhere.

Niger Coup: President Tinubu welcomes ECCAS support for ECOWAS. Source: Premium Times

Mr Tinubu reinforced the position of the regional body not to accept any attempt by the military junta in Niger to intimidate and harass President Mohamed Bazoum.

Niger Coup: ECOWAS Parliament wants more dialogue, supports sanctions. Source: Premium Times

The parliamentary arm of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) on Monday said it is in support of all the decisions taken by ECOWAS heads of state about the coup in Niger, including the impositions of sanctions.

Terrorists Shoot Down Helicopter In North-Central Nigeria. Source: Humangle

Nigeria’s Air Force spokesperson said the helicopter was “discovered to have crashed” without stating why, but HumAngle learnt terrorists operating in the region shot it down.

Niger: U.S. mounts pressure on Tinubu as ECOWAS fumes over mixed signals. Source: Guardian

In a statement last night, Blinken said: “I spoke today with Nigerian President Bola Tinubu. I commended President Tinubu’s leadership of ECOWAS second Extraordinary Summit on the situation in the Republic of Niger. I noted the importance of maintaining pressure on the National Council for the Safeguard of the Homeland (CNSP) to restore constitutional order and to see President Bazoum and his family released.”

UN, US, ECOWAS Flay Niger’s Junta’s Plan To Prosecute Bazoum. Source: Daily Trust

The United Nations, United States and ECOWAS have voiced outrage over threats by Niger’s military rulers to try detained President Mohamed Bazoum, saying the move would worsen tensions.

Breaking: Aircraft belonging to Nigerian government shot down, 13 Soldiers killed in Niger. Source: Blue print

Gun wielding bandits, Monday, reportedly invaded Chukuba Ward in the Shiroro Local Government Area of Niger State, said Mr Sanni Kokki, the spokesperson of Shiroro concerned youth. Kokki who made the disclosure in a telephone interview with journalists said the bandits during the invasion, brought down a fighter helicopter in the area and  killed the pilot.

BREAKING: Three Senior Military Officers, 20 Other Soldiers Killed As Terrorists Ambush Army Convoy In Niger State. Source: Sahara Reporters

Over 23 personnel of the Nigerian army have been killed following an ambush on a military convoy by gunmen suspected to be terrorists in Niger State.

B’Haram vows to recapture territories recovered by troops. Source: The Guardian

Boko Haram has vowed to recapture the territories recovered by Nigerian troops. Security analyst and a counter-insurgency expert on Lake Chad region, Zagazola Makama, disclosed this, yesterday, in a video shared on X, formerly known as Twitter.

Niger coup leaders vow to prosecute ousted president for ‘high treason’ Source: rfi

Niger’s military regime vowed late Sunday to prosecute ousted president Mohamed Bazoum for “high treason” and slammed West African leaders for imposing sanctions on the country.

Nigerian delegation says Niger junta is open to diplomacy. Source: rfi

Coup leaders in Niger are open to diplomacy to resolve a standoff with West Africa’s regional bloc, a group of senior Nigerian Islamic scholars said on Sunday after meeting the junta in Niamey.

‘We are going to make the French leave!’: Coup supporters gathered near military base in Niger. Source: News24

Thousands of supporters of Niger’s coup leaders gathered on Friday near a French military base on the outskirts of the capital Niamey, AFP reporters saw.

Niger needs deeper mediation diplomacy, not military intervention. Source: Premium Times

PREMIUM TIMES urges all national, regional and international stakeholders to invest more in mediation and diplomacy above the military invasion of Niger at this time.

Niger’s coup leaders say they will prosecute deposed President Mohamed Bazoum for ‘high treason’. Source: AP

Niger’s mutinous soldiers say they will prosecute deposed President Mohamed Bazoum for “high treason” and undermining state security, in an announcement hours after the junta said they were open to dialogue with West African nations to resolve the mounting regional crisis.

Coup: Niger juntas, Nigeria’s intervention team settle for dialogue. Source: PRNigeria

Nigeria’s Intervention Team comprising prominent Islamic scholars in the country at the weekend met with the coup leaders in Niger where both parties agreed to intensify the option of dialogue in resolving the political crisis in that country.

Turmoil, Blackouts And Blockades: Cautious Support For Junta In Niger Despite Sanctions. Source: Humangle

Sanctions have been imposed on Niger after a new military government refused to return elected leaders to office after a coup. People are suffering as a result, but some told HumAngle they still cautiously supported the junta.

Niger Crisis: A Tipping Point In The Fight Against Extremist Insurgents? Source: Humangle

The coup in Niger could significantly hinder Nigeria’s anti-terrorism efforts against Boko Haram and the Islamic State in North East Nigeria, destabilise the wider region, and further jeopardise democratic governance, observers say.

Niger Border Closure: Arewa Economic Forum Laments N13bn Loss, 2000 Stranded Containers. Source: PRNigeria

The Arewa Economic Forum (AED) has declared that the financial loss occasioned by the closure of the Nigerien border with Nigeria is 13 billion naira on a weekly basis. The forum in a press conference in Abuja on Sunday also lamented that Northern Nigerian businessmen have over 2000 containers of perishable goods that are stranded due to the closure which was a consequence of the coup in Niger Republic.

Nigerian delegation says Niger junta is open to diplomacy. Source: Reuters

Coup leaders in Niger are open to diplomacy to resolve a standoff with West Africa’s regional bloc, a group of senior Nigerian Islamic scholars said on Sunday after meeting the junta in Niamey.

ECOWAS, Niger’s Junta Begin Talks Soon. Source: Daily Trust

The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the Niger’s military junta will begin talks this week, Daily Trust learnt yesterday. Sources said a date would be fixed after the Nigeria’s Islamic scholars, led by Sheik Bala Lau, Chairman of Jam’atul Izalatu Bida Waikamatu Sunnah, who met with the junta in Niamey, Niger’s capital, on Saturday brief President Bola Tinubu.

Breaking: Niger coup leader makes u-turn. Source: Blue Print

After refusing to meet the leadership of the Economic Community of West Africa (ECOWAS), the Niger Republic coup leader, General Abdourahmane Tchiani, has yielded to dialogue. This decision was reached after meeting with Nigerian Islamic scholars led by the national leader of Jama’atu Izalatil Bid’ah Wa Iqamatus Sunnah (JIBWIS), Sheikh Abdullahi Bala Lau, in Niger Republic.

Tchiani opens up: We sacked Bazoum to save Niger, Nigeria, meets Islamic clerics, submits to dialogue. Source: Blue print

The Nigerien military leader, General Abdourahmane Tchiani, has said the military sacked the President Mohamed Bazoum-led government to save both Republic of Niger and Nigeria from possible threat.

Nigerian Air Force MI-171 Helicopter crashes. Source: Premium Times


Nigerian Air Force MI-171 Helicopter on a casualty evacuation mission crashed on Monday at about 1.00 p.m. near Chukuba Village in Niger State.

Terrorists kill one, abduct seven others in fresh Zamfara attack. Source: Premium Times

An Islamic scholar, Malam Murtala was killed while seven residents were abducted when terrorists invaded Bungudu town in Zamfara State Monday morning.

Bandits Disguised in Hijab Kidnap Zamfara Gold Merchant. Source: PRNigeria

Four armed bandits who disguised themselves in Hijab (the veil for Muslim women) have abducted a businessman popularly known as Haji Isiya in Zamfara State.

Gold, Livestock And Bikes: How Abductees Paid Ransoms During Nigeria’s Cash Crunch. Source: Humangle

When the authorities withdrew cash from circulation by redesigning the Naira, families of abducted people desperately searched for cash to pay ransoms. In some cases terrorists adapted, demanding ransoms in other ways.

Benin, Burkina Faso suspend media outlets over coverage of Niger coup. Source: Premium Times


Authorities in Benin and Burkina Faso must immediately lift their respective suspensions of La Gazette du Golfe and Radio Oméga, and allow the media to report without fear on regional politics, including the coup in Niger, the Committee to Protect Journalists said Tuesday.

Resurgence of killings threatens N’Central states, food production. Source: Guardian

The resurgence of brutal killings in the North Central geo-political zone, which increased since May 2023, claiming over 1200 lives within three months, has become a major threat to the N28 trillion Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the six states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

Nigeriens call for war volunteers, Sahel Alliance seeks release of Bazoum. Source: The Guardian

Nigeriens have called for mass recruitment of volunteers to assist the army in the face of a growing threat by the West African regional bloc, ECOWAS who insists on tighter sanctions and military invasion if the junta refuses to reinstate the deposed President Mohamed Bazoum.


Peace and Security

Why military takeover of govt in West Africa increasingly re-emerging – Shehu Sani. Source: Premium Times

A former member of the National Assembly, Shehu Sani, has identified five reasons for the increasing re-emergence of military takeover of governments in Africa, especially in the West African sub-region.

DHQ Denies Receiving Coup Request. Source: PRNigeria

The Defence Headquarters is concerned about a false and disturbing social media reports twisted to state that the Armed Forces of Nigeria (AFN) received a request to effect a change of leadership in the country.



Discrimination a way of life for hundreds of internally displaced children. Source: Ndarason

Taunting and discrimination, the danger of crossing a busy highway and no secondary school in the village mean hundreds of internally displaced children in Auno, in the Konduga Local Government Area of Borno State, are missing out on an education.

WHO red list fails to stem exodus of health workers from Nigeria, others. Source: Premium Times

The Nigerian Association of Nurses and Midwives has reported that Nigeria now has a nurse-to-patient ratio of one nurse to about 1,160 patients, whereas the OECD average is one nurse to around 114 patients.


Stabilization and economic development

Customs, Borno Govt Partner for Effective Cross-Border Trade in N/East. Source: PRNigeria

The Ag. Comptroller-General Nigeria Customs Service, Bashir Adewale Adeniyi MFR, on Thursday, 17th August 2023, expressed his readiness to improve trade activities in the Northeastern part of Nigeria. The Governor, who expressed interest in liaising with the Service to promote transborder trade in the Northeast, particularly in Borno State, solicited the cooperation of the Service.

Trade between Nigeria and Niger at a standstill because of coup.Source: Ndarason

Traders in Borno State have been losing money hand over fist since the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) ordered the closure of all borders between Nigeria and Niger in an effort to put an end to the coup and get the Nigerien president, Mohamed Bazoum, reinstated.

Cost Of Living Crisis: The Deadly Gang Recruiting Poor Taxi Drivers For Crime. Source: Humangle

The escalating criminal activities of a gang called the Marlians, known for a campaign of violent robberies in Maiduguri, is worrying people and the government. The gang are being aided by the rising price of fuel hitting transport workers.  

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