Controversy trails new video claiming Boko Haram leader, Abubakar Shekau, is alive

The military insists the real Shekau was killed long ago

A few hours after the Boko Haram leader, Abubakar Shekau, claimed in a new video, that he was “alive and well,” the Nigerian military authorities have debunked the claim, insisting that he had been killed.

Mr. Shekau in the new video, obtained by the AFP news agency, debunked the September 24 claim by the military that he had been killed, describing it as “propaganda.”

In that statement, the military spokesperson, Chris Olukolade, had said the sect leader was killed during a recent fight with the military in Konduga .

In the new clip, Mr. Shekau said, “Here I am alive. I will only die the day Allah takes my breath,’ he said in the 36-minute video. He added that the sect was running our…Islamic caliphate” and administering sharia punishment.

He added, “Nothing will kill me until my days are over….I’m still alive. Some people asked you if Shekau has two souls. No, I have one soul, by Allah. It is propaganda that is prevalent. I have one soul. I’m an Islamic student.”

Mr. Shekau also claimed in the video that the air force jet that was declared missing three weeks ago was shot down by his men.

The sect leader who spoke for 16 minutes in Arabic and Hausa did not indicate where or when the video was shot.

Mr. Shekau, the BBC reported, appeared in the video dressed in combat fatigues and black rubber boots, standing on the back of a pick-up van and firing an anti-aircraft gun into the air.

It also reported that he was flanked by four heavily armed masked fighters.

But in a statement posted on its blog on Thursday, the military insisted that Bashir Mohammed alias Abubakar Shekau was actually eliminated as corroborated by still photographs, video evidence and surrendering and captured terrorists.

Titled, “The Purported Shekau Video in Circulation,” the statement said, “The Defence Headquarters is studying the claims made in the video purportedly released by the terrorists showing their leader Abubakar Shekau as dismissing his death.

“From immediate observation and what some online news outlets claimed to have seen, the video did not indicate when it was shot neither did it show any proof of life or currency such as screen time or date. The video also did not make any reference to anything that has happened since the impostor’s reported death.

“It is also noteworthy that the air plane said to be mentioned in the video had been missing before he was killed. It should not surprise anybody if the terrorists decide to manipulate pictures, clone another Shekau or upload a pre-recorded video all in a bid to prove invincible.

“As far as we are concerned, the individual who was appearing in video and claiming to be the leader of the terrorist group was killed in the Kondunga battle in September. The resemblance of the corpse and that of the eccentric character was incontrovertible. His identity was equally corroborated by people who knew him before we announced his death.”

The military also said it was still conducting a thorough investigation into the new claims in the purported video just as it promised that justice would be served to whoever bears that name or designation and whoever engages in act.


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  • Otile

    First find an escape route before taunting the cobra. Imam Shekau, Allah ya yi zamani. All say Ameen


      boko haram

      • Otile

        You want me to respond you in kind and say mohammed is a pedophile, leave me alone.

        • JESUS.IS.A.GAY

          jesus and his purpted father are gays. mary a whore, whore ghost a homosexual.

          • Iyke Okongwu

            Like your father!

          • Rico

            The military should get a life for God’s sake. How many Shakaus do they want to kill before they get the real one…and guys, stop insulting your religions because of a deranged killer!

          • Rico

            They say you are a pegan! Can’t the stick or stone you worship teach you some respect? That Jesus you are insulting does not have a grave. Does that not make you fear? In His name the dead has been raised. Does that not intrigue you? Or is because His followers do not carry swords and rocket launchers to torment the innocent? Show some respect man!

          • JESUS.IS.A.GAY

            he was killed by the Jews because he is a bastard. his carcass was burnt and the ashes were spread on the Mediterranean. he wasn’t blessed to have a grave like men born by father and mother. he is a devil that leads mankind to hell fire.

          • Rico

            Why don’t you get some little education. If you did you, will be more tolerant of others. Try lagos state. Primary education is free there.

          • JESUS.IS.A.GAY

            human flesh worshipper i.e. “JESUS”

          • Otile

            Stop uttering blasphemy. If your were saying this about Prophet Mohammed you would face fatwa.

          • JESUS.IS.A.GAY


          • Otile

            May God have mercy on you, for you know not what you are doing.

          • emmanuel

            Otile you are not better than this man, make una two go sidon.

            Jesus does not have advocates in-hostilities, so no man has the responsibility to fight for him, when an over fed and deluded fellow who probably does crack go beserk.

          • Otile

            May Almighty and Merciful God forgive me for ever taking on this blasphemer. May God forgive him and show him the light. Amen.

        • JESUS.IS.A.GAY

          very simple to say.

        • tuco

          Mind you, the person you are replying is not a muslim, coz no true muslim in this world will abuse Jesus. The person must be a pagan.

          • Remi

            The US stated that the Guy is likely to be alive and I am sure they know what they are talking about.

          • Otile

            He is no pagan, a lot of Nigerian Muslims are irreligious.

          • tuco

            you are outrightly wrong. No matter how irreligious a muslim is, one cannot be a muslim without believing in Jesus (Prophet Isa A.S). We as Muslims strongly believe him as the servant and messenger of God, and NOT the son of God. The following is some of the few the Quran mention about Jesus. We have only one Quran in the world, so you can confirm coz there are English translation:

            “and (remember) when Isa (Jesus), son of Maryam (Mary), said: “O children of Israel! I am the Messenger of Allah to you, confirming the Taurat [(Torah) which came] before me, and giving glad tidings of a Messenger to come after me, whose name shall be Ahmad. But when he (Ahmad i.e. Muhammad (S.A.W)) came to them with clear proofs, they said: “This is plain magic”. (Q61:6)

            “He [Isa (Jesus)] said: “Verily, I am a slave of Allah, He has given me the Scripture and made me a Prophet;”
            “And He has made me blessed wheresoever I be, and has enjoined on me Salat (prayer), and Zakat, as long as I live”
            “And dutiful to my mother, and made me not arrogant, unblest.”
            “And Salam (peace) be upon me the day I was born, and the day I die, and the day I shall be raised alive!”
            “Such is Isa (Jesus), son of Maryam (Mary). (It is) a statement of truth, about which they doubt (or dispute)”
            “It befits not (the Majesty of) Allah that He should beget a son [this refers to the slander if Christians against Allah, by saying that Isa (Jesus) is the son of Allah]. Glorified (and Exalted) is He (above all that they associate with Him). When He decrees a thing, He only says to it: “Be!” – and it is. ( Q18:30-35)

  • Swagger

    This our sef! I never hear this kain thing. Person wey get him body says “I’m alive”, another person say, “No, na lie. I don kill you since!” How can a military be claiming the cloning of a human being? What evidence do they want to prove Shekau is alive? The man never die abeg Nigerian military…

    • True son of the soil

      Abeg help me ask them

    • Otile

      Thank you bro, I am not the only one thinking that Imam is alive and kicking.

      • emmanuel

        Imam gini?

        That name is sweet in your mouth because you are a lover of evil.

        Na the evil when dey inside you go consume yiu like you junior master Bashir Mohammed. If you like, let him be alive in your mind.

        The chicken has been slaughtered by Nigerian forces, period!

        • Otile

          You are full of hate. Leave the South quickly.

  • murtala bg

    Whatever may be the case,the sponsors of boko haram are beginning to be weaken by the little success they achieve compared to the huge sums they invested in the terror campaign. they may be contemplating the forsake of these evil dogs.sustaining a conflict situation through terror sponsorship is quite expensive even for a western state.moreover these sponsors were terribly hunted by the innocent bloods they financed its shedding.they are consumed in fear that these dogs may eat their masters.

  • Chris1408

    Whether Shekau is dead or alive is irrelevant, Nigerian military should defeat Boko Haram, bring the girls back and get the lost territories back. Three weeks has past, no word on the missing jet.

  • Omoboy

    In this age of DNA, one wonders why the Nigerian military still relies on physical appearance to prove its claim. For me that’s the very reason why our development is retarded

    • Gideon Orkar

      Do you know the relatives of Shekau II so we can match DNA or do you think a person’s name can be seen in the DNA?

  • Factual

    I suspect our security agents are hiding something from Nigerians. Why are they always in a hurry to kill the leaders of BH after they capture them alive? The recent guy they claim to be imposing as Shekau was caught alive with some injuries. S why did they killed him on the spot? Wouldn’t he have been taken to the Army HQS and interrogated him to get a lot of useful information ? Or is it that someone at the top ordered his killing to cover up something? These questions and many others will continue to be asked by Nigerians. The Government and the Military owe Nigerians explanations.

  • Mosaku 147

    I can’t understand what is happening anymore. Marylyn killed the first shekau,olukolade killed the second.who is going to kill the third and proberbly the last shekau for us now that he has decided to resurrect.
    Someone should please advice olukolade to stop talking.he now sounds like a broken record.hear him talking about date the video was made,screen time and date,that the airplane mentioned in the video was downed before he was killed,manipulate pictures,clone another shekau etc.has BH previous video shown time and date or location it was short from?what is actually wrong with olukolade.cant he keep quite for once.he further said the resemblance of ‘the corpse’ and that of the eccentric character are incontrovertible.who told olukolade his picture was incontrovertible?or was it because people did not want to ague with their fake picture?
    Did shehu sani and the other guy living in Dubai confirm his death before olukolade went public?i recall theDubai airport worker said shekau was still alive and well about a week ago. This two are people who we have always been told know him well and have access to him and info about him.
    I have decided not allow olukolade and Marylyn give me hypertension,so from today I will stop commenting on anything that has got to do with this myth by name abubakar shekau.
    I will also ask APC to desist from ‘their’ evil act of resurrecting shekau anytime he is killed again by our military.
    Meanwhile,Badeh should please bring back our jet because it seems we are no longer talking about it.

  • Holy Prophet Mohammed Sex Mach

    My people:

    Nigerians don’t understand what is coming soon. They’re still talking nonsense in beer parlours.
    When the Muslims show their true colors in southern Nigeria, there will be blood and sorrows there.
    Islam is a very dangerous activity – anyone who is not wary of it, and armed against it, is not wise.

    • tuco

      The fact that a few miscreants do armed robbery in the name of Christianity doesn’t make all Christians armed robbers, or does it??? So the same applies to BH or any terror group to Muslims. This terrorist are in the minority, in fact they are minute compared to the rest of the muslim population. But bcoz it’s destruction, that’s what is amplifying what they do.

      • Gideon Orkar

        They don’t go shouting “we rob you in the name of Jesus”.

        • Otile

          Tell him, bro.

        • tuco

          Whether they shout or not, as far as they christians they are christians. Also, even the BH that shout “Allahu Akbar” it only literally means”God is Great” in Arabic. Don’t we worship the same God? They mention God and not any human flesh, but don’t get me wrong ooo coz they are on their own regarding the killings they do, can’t you see the major casualties of this BH are the Muslims. They don’t represent us at all, likewise we strongly condemn what they do.

          • Gideon Orkar

            Islam underpins their ideology and what religion underpins stealing?

          • tuco

            your wrong. Islam does NOT underpins this barbaric ideology of theirs. Quote a verse if really your truthful where it supports their ideology. It’s all fatal misinterpretation they have. They lack sufficient knowledge of the deen and when one lacks sufficient knowledge he/she begin to misinterpret and follow only their heart desires.

          • tuco

            Also is part of the reason why from the onset when they started their campaign, they begin to attack and kill knowledgeable people of the deen whom they believe counter their ideology and therefore are stumbling block to their campaign. Go and ask who killed Sheikh Jafar of Kano, or Sheikh Albani of Zaria along with numerous renowned scholars of the deen.

          • Gideon Orkar

            You are missing the point. They read from the Koran or have you not seen video of Shekau reciting from the Koran and hailing their atrocities as might of Allah? Your argument should be that they have perverted Islam or have a wrong interpretation of Islam but to deny that Islam underpins their ideology is ludicrous . You have different sects in Islam and the “right” one depends on which side of the divide you are standing. As far as BH concerned, moderate Muslims are apostates.

          • tuco

            you see some of this verses shekau reads are verses that were revealed during Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W) time as events unfold at that time. But shekau only reads a portion of the verse to justify their atrocities. Also Jihad in real sense is to defend, for instance if there is a threat to your wealth, striving to defend it is a form of Jihad in Islam. When one reads the history of holy war the Prophet fought, you will see that it was all fought to defend either themselves, their wealth or their land just as in the case of Mecca. Again in Islam, is not permissible for an individual to wage war, it’s only a leader in Islam that can command to do so i.e if your being attacked or oppressed. From this view shekau is an ordinary man and not a leader in Islam that can command to wage war, and what for?. Also the fact that they kill Muslims, I’m sure that alone speak of their wrong ideology. you see most non-Muslims have what they call Islamaphobia. People don’t wait and understand thoroughly what does really actually Islam says, what does it precisely teaches? But most people allow sentiments and bias to guide their thinking. Islam is not done off head, everything is written and explained in detail, but when one reads one portion if it and ignore the rest, then that is where the problem lies.

          • Gideon Orkar

            Has the above invalidated my claim? Even in Christianity you have sects who have different interpretations of the Bible and also believe others are wrong.

            BH is an Islamic sect that have interpreted the Koran in a way to justify their stance and view other Islamic sects as wrong.

          • tuco

            Ok let me ask you a simple question coz i still can’t find an answer. Where are christians told to go to church on Sunday and go to Israel as well in the bible???

          • Gideon Orkar

            You are chasing tail here

          • emmanuel

            Who said the major casualties are muslims? There you go lying, son of the bond woman.

            Chibok and the surrounding localities are indigenous people who are mainly Christians. Ali Ndume and his men have been deeply involved in ethnic cleansing or non-muslims.

            Na who you think say you dey deceive? Nigerians would pay you people back in 2015

  • tuco

    All this controversy is all the Nigerian military ‘s fault. I mean it’s a very unprofessional and unreliable way of presenting an evidence. When the U.S killed Bin Laden, they used DNA to confirm. It’s high time for our security intelligence to have a national database that captures each person’s DNA, Finger Print, and Bio-Data, this surely shall go a long way in curbing crime and terrorism.

    • emmanuel

      Why would Nigeria have such data on its citizens when the Boko Haram North has worked tirelessly to forestall it? It would be the undoing of the North if Nigeria goes that way – false population figures would be exposed

  • taewo

    Never trust this deeply corrupt, armed wing of the PDP. Who knows how many millions of Naira they spent creating false images of shekau’s death?

  • Maria

    When Bin Laden was killed, we neither hear nor see another Bin Laden claiming he was not killed. Recently, America killed the head of Alshabab, we neither hear nor see him in any video claiming he is still alive. Nigeria’s case is always different. Our system is built on falsehood and deceit. The Nigeria army is the most deceitful military in the world.

    • Gideon Orkar

      You are right Mrs Shekau

      • Maria

        Yeah… your leprous father married me to him.

        • Gideon Orkar

          So a leper got your mother pregnant and married you off at age of 12?


          • Maria

            Good to know that you confirmed the fact that your useless father is a leper.

          • Gideon Orkar

            Did you get VVF like your mother?

          • Truthometer

            You are so uncultured! Exchanging insults with a woman is the highest degree of idleness I’ve ever seen in any real man. Simply go and get a real life! Blogging for, and defending Dumbo online is not a job for real men. Better still, you can go and learn a trade, i.e. carpentry, masonry etc. It’s never too late, because once Dumbo is out of office, you might end up to start panhandling on the streets of Otuoke. Sincerely.

          • Gideon Orkar

            You are right…I should not be exchanging words with a woman. Next time I will get a stick and flog her with it, after all women should be seen…sorry…in hijab and not heard. How dare her speak to a man? These are the sort of things her husband Shekau is against

        • emmanuel

          Ye pa. Dis man don finish mohammed for here. E true tru know say you dan daudu!

          Kai barawo

    • Otile

      You got it Maria. They think we are all gullible fools. Propaganda alone can’t kill Imam, he is still alive. In a few months when another big city is about to fall they will kill him again and court-marshal some low ranking soldiers to deflect criticism.

    • emmanuel

      We know that you have economic interest in Boko Haram, just like Shehu Sani who came out the next day to say Bashir Mohammed was dead.

      The truth is that the Bashir Mohammed who has spoken as Shekau since September 2013 had a swelling on his head, which Shekau did not have.

      Please tell the man to talk about the national award held five days ago and why they dropped the Susan Chibok girl in a new video with date. Experts would examine such video for a proof.

      Talk is cheap!

    • ifebuche

      Before he was killed and he came on board, did any other claim to be bin Laden? Use your head and know differences. Don’t just compared by force by fire.

      • Maria

        “Before he was killed and he came on board, did any other claim to be bin Laden? Use your head and know differences. Don’t just compared by force by fire.”…Illiterate… could you please translate what you just typed? This can only be typed by a stark illiterate.

        • Tobibs


        • Wähala

          Hahahaaa chai!
          Dead men don’t come on board. Maria biko, don’t make me choke on odeku trying to make sense out of an illiterate’s blabbing… he obviously compared, “by force by fire” !!!

  • Dan makoko

    All this talk about the US “killing” Bin Laden sickens me. The greatest deceiver in the world today is the US.

    For starters Bin laden died in 2001 between the months of september and december. Now wait before you skip this “conspiracy theory”. In july of 2001 Anthony Thompson of The Guardian (Nov 1, 2001) reported that Usama was admitted to the American hospital in Dubai for a kidney condition…

    “Bin Laden is reported to have arrived in Dubai on July 4 from Quetta in Pakistan with his own personal doctor, nurse and four bodyguards, to be treated in the urology department. While there he was visited by several members of his family and Saudi personalities, and the CIA.

    The CIA chief was seen in the lift, on his way to see Bin Laden, and later, it is alleged, boasted to friends about his contact. He was recalled to Washington soon afterwards.

    Intelligence sources say that another CIA agent was also present; and that Bin Laden was also visited by Prince Turki al Faisal, then head of Saudi intelligence, who had long had links with the Taliban, and Bin Laden. Soon afterwards Turki resigned, and more recently he has publicly attacked him in an open letter: “You are a rotten seed, like the son of Noah”.”

    Let us put reports aside even if not contested by the CIA. Navy team 6 “killed’ Bin Laden and according to the pentagon 8 crack team members wearing a helmet mounted camera entered Bin Laden’s room and as he tried to grab his rifle (earlier US govt report said he tried to hide behind his wife the story changed since its an international crime to kill someone who hides behind his wife!) they shot him in the face. So where is Bin Laden’s picture (or video)?
    The US govt said that his face is too damaged to show to the public!
    You have the worlds best reconstructive surgeons and they cant put his face back? You have live video shown to Obama of the killing and you cant freeze just one frame before he was shot?
    Believe it or not Navy team 6 members are all dead today. 12 of the 16 died the same year they “killed” Bin Laden in a helicopter crash in Afghanistan. The rest about a year later.
    To this day no one has seen the picture of a dead or captured Bin Laden anywhere.

  • Otile

    General Christian Olukolade why are you proud? What is your claim to victory? Today Imam Shekau is alive and kicking. Stop sending the boys into harm’s way. Let Imam govern his Caliphate as he sees fit. What are you fighting for, to keep Nigeria one? Olonuw maje. How many boys are you going to sacrifice in vain?

    • Nwa Aba #Lets Break Up Now

      Nigeria is fighting propaganda & terrorism war
      this is pre-recorded video to keep boko boys together
      incase shekau got killed like predecessor
      expect more videos in coming weeks

      • Otile

        Do you really believe that Imam is not alive? How many time are they going to kill him? His killing will continue until he liberates all the Sharia states. His recent video seen on BBC is irrefutable.

  • Wise Head

    The Nigerian media is lazy and irresponsible. They would rather believe the blood-sucking terrorist. In more decent and development-minded countries, the media would conduct their own investigations and come up with the truth, instead of helping to propagate Boko Haram’s unintelligent manipulation of information to appear invincible. And once they establish the truth that this fellow is dead and rotting in hell, they would dismiss the impostor and that would weaken their resolve. If you look closely at the pictures of the “Shekau” that used to appear before he was killed in June last year and the one killed in September, you will notice a marked difference on their facial features, but the media will choose to close their eyes to that just to discredit the army. One day, the army would refuse to fight these people, and let me see where Premium Times and the other media would find the space to right their vacuous stories. What a pity.

    • emmanuel

      Na soooo. Animals in human skin parading themselves as media houses. Bunch of lazy, compromised hands

  • akpos1?

    This Jona’s government is the worst govt in africa…Boko haram is winning the war. We need the opposition to win the next election so they can eradicate terrorism in 3 months as promised by Bhuhari.

  • underground

    Nigerians are easily fooled and gullible by their useless barely literate News houses. They all jump on the bandwagon of these mindless foreigners peddling jargon in their devious plot to destabilise the Country. Wake up people and support your Army.