Maiduguri — Nigerian police have arrested 22 suspected Boko Haram commanders, a high number of them in connection with the globally-condemned kidnapping of 276 schoolgirls in 2014.
Among those arrested is an alleged overall commanders of the terror group, Mayinta Modu (aged 23), who is suspected to have coordinated the abductions from the Chibok government school in the northeast Borno State.
According to the ages supplied by police, the alleged kingpin and five others were still teenagers when the minors were abducted. The youngest suspect arrested in connection with the kidnapping is aged 20.
Two other 20-year-olds are alleged to be a Boko Haram logistics supplier in their Sambisa forest stronghold and a conveyor of suicide bombers from the forest to different locations respectively.
Another suspect belongs to the civilian joint task force, which assists the military against the terror group, but has allegedly been aiding Boko Haram with logistics.
Damian Chukwu, Borno Commissioner of Police, said the suspects had confessed to the alleged crimes, mostly in the state and Adamawa, also in the northeast.
"They also confessed to the kidnapping of Chibok schoolgirls among other violent crimes including abduction and ambush of security personnel," Chukwu said.
Chukuwu added, "They will all be arraigned in court on completion of investigations."
The arrest of the suspects is a breakthrough in resolving the Chibok kidnapping.
It was recently reported two men had been jailed for 20 and 30 years for their role in the mass abduction.