They may be known as the weaker s*x but in
the battle to flush out Boko Haram from
Nigerian territory, they stand equal with their
Fearless, pretty and bold, the female hunters
of Adamawa State fear neither man nor
woman. To them, the common enemy is not
their gender but Boko Haram.
Ladi is a dark-skinned young lady in her 20s.
Looking at her, you would hardly believe that
she possesses the boldness to confront
members of the terrorist sect. In fact, you
would pass her off as a young man due to her
masculine features but she is in all respects a
lady. She smiles as the reporter gapes at her,
wondering whether he is seeing double.
But she told Sunday New Telegraph that she
was motivated by the desire to join in the
effort to save her nation from the rampaging
She is not alone, our correspondent gathered,
as there are a number of female hunters
engaged in the Civilian Joint Task Force. They
are all part of a civilian vigilante coalition
known as Ibn Fadlallah’s forces. Barely literate
and armed with dane guns as well as bows
and arrows, they risk lives helping the armed
forces to hunt members of the sect in the
jungles of the North-East states of Adamawa,
Borno and Yobe.
Asked why she mustered the courage to join
the effort, Ladi replied:
“Boko Haram’s days are numbered. We are not
afraid and we are ever ready to fight them.
“Me, fear death? Never. This is because I
believe that we shall all taste it someday,’’
said Ladi, with boldness etched on her face.
Ladi, like other male volunteers was optimistic
that, with support and motivation they would
“I can assure you that, with support,
encouragement and assistance we can play our
own role in fighting the monster called Boko
“We need support from government and
individuals to cater for our families,” she
added, brandishing her dane gun.
Though she is married, she declined to disclose
personal details for security reasons. Ladi and
her colleagues say they dare to confront the
insurgents with the inferior weapons in their
hands, vowing that, “If you are committed and
have faith in God, you will succeed. We know
they (Boko Haram) are using sophisticated
weapons, but that will not deter us from facing
“They thought we would be afraid; never! One
can kill a snake with his or her little stick;
commitment, resilience and above all faith are
the key factors,” she concluded.
Ladi is part of the large army of hunters and
CJTF which battled Boko Haram after it tried to
install Amirs (leaders) in Maiha, a town in
They foiled the move and killed several
members of the sect.
The civilian force also helped the armed forces
to liberate some of the captured towns.
A state government official involved in the
recruitment of the hunters and CJTF told our
correspondent that it was in order to stem the
tide that the idea of drafting the local hunters
allegedly versed in the use of voodoo powers
“We are in doubt about the sincerity of
Nigerian soldiers in the whole operation, and
we sense complicity as what is happening. It
could not have been possible without any form
of collusion, so we began to think of other
options,” said a community leader in Mubi,
Afterwards, the civilian force was mobilised to
tackle the insurgents. Ibn Fadlalallah’s army of
local hunters, vigilantes and CJTF members
were said to have been mobilised by creating
alliances with towns to fortify and defend
themselves against Boko Haram.
“These brave warriors have promised to
liberate the North-East from Boko Haram. They
are preparing and engaging in combat in
Adamawa and Borno. All brave citizens have
been invited to join the legions,” said a
community leader who didn’t want to be
In the first operation, the local hunters and
vigilante group were reported to have
overwhelmed the insurgents. They confronted
the militants in their hundreds, killing dozens
of the extremists and recapturing the town.
Residents said the local hunters were stationed
in some areas for four days, mapping out
strategies on how to recapture Mubi before
they finally took on the insurgents.
However, the recapture of the towns by the
civilian force elicited jubilation, with residents
chanting songs of victory to God.
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