Abubakar Shekau, the kingpin of the dreaded group, Boko Haram dismissed Nigerian military claims of his death in a new video.
He further said the militants had implemented strict Islamic laws in captured towns.
“Here I am, alive. I will only die the day Allah takes my breath,” Shekau said in the 36-minute video, adding that his group was “running our… Islamic caliphate” and administering sharia punishments.
It would be recalled that the Nigeria’s military said Shekau was dead and that a man who had been posing as the group’s leader in the videos had been shot dead after fighting with troops in the far northeast.
The claim was debunked by several sources monitoring the insurgency in north east Nigeria. It was even further thrashed when the 7 seconds video on the Shekau look-alike went viral on the internet.
The captured man who was later killed did not look like the man who normally taunted Nigeria’s leaders and their military in video clips.
The new 36-minute video showed Shekau in combat fatigues and black rubber boots standing on the back of a pick-up truck and firing an anti-aircraft gun into the air.
Standing in front of three camouflaged vans and flanked by four heavily armed, masked fighters, he then speaks for 16 minutes in Arabic and the Hausa language widely spoken in northern Nigeria.
There was no indication of where or when the video was shot.
The heavily bearded Shekau, who appeared to be the same as those in previous clips, said the military’s claim that he was dead was propaganda.
“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,” he said, apparently reading from a script.
“It is propaganda that is prevalent. I have one soul. I’m an Islamic student.”