Military cautions Gov Zulum over ‘unverified claims’

The Nigerian Military has cautioned Borno State Governor, Babagana Zulum, over unverified allegations against its personnel in the theatre of operations.

This was part of the recommendations of an investigative team set up to verify the allegations that soldiers in the war front have been engaging in farming and fishing activities.

Major General Felix Omoigui, the Deputy Theatre Commander Operation Lafiya Dole, briefed reporters on the findings of the team on Friday in Maiduguri, the Borno State capital.

He revealed that the allegations emanated from personnel of some security agencies, which were neither investigated nor verified before reporting same to the governor.

Omoigui who described the allegations as false and malicious explained that when the team visited Baga town, there were no records of fishing or farming by the troops as alleged.

“The prohibition of troops from engaging in farming and fishing activities in Area of Responsibility is contained in the Standing Operative Procedures,” he stated.

The deputy theatre commander said the team also found that the entire area of Baga was too heavily mined with Improvised Explosive Device (IED) to encourage any farming activity, adding that 55 mines have so far been detonated since the town was reclaimed.

“The allegations were conjured by some overzealous security agencies who for personal glory and without recourse for the tenets of inter-agency cooperation decided to propagate falsehood,” Omoigui said.

He added, “Remarks of highly placed persons is capable of demoralising the troops which would negatively impact on operations and the confidence of the locals in the military.”

According to him, the report recommends that Governor Zulum should be advised on the need to contact the Headquarters of the Theatre Command to verify any allegation against troops in Operation Lafiya Dole.

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