The Nigerian Army has denied claims by the Yobe State Governor, Ibrahim Gaidam, that the military was responsible for the recent suspected Boko Haram terrorists’ attack and abduction of female students from Government Girls Science Technical College in Dapchi.
The military through the Deputy Director Public Relations, Theatre Command Operation Lafiya Dole, Col Onyema Nwachukwu, has decribed the allegations as unfortunate and far from the truth.
The State Governor had blamed the abduction of the Dapchi schoolgirls on the withdrawal of security personnel from communities in the state.
He alleged that security check points were withdrawn from Dapchi and other communities, few days before the attack, a development which he believes gave room for the incident.
“There was not any justification whatsoever to withdraw the military from that place, knowing fully well that there is a girls’ school there with about 900 of them and it’s a local government headquarters.
“They withdrew the military personnel last week, which was not even known to us,” he said.
But the Army in its response has said that its Headquarters will not attempt to join in any blame game, it is very expedient to set the record straight for the benefit of posterity.
In carrying out its mandate to counter terrorism and insurgency in northeastern Nigeria, Operation Lafiya Dole has been alive to its responsibilities Vis a Vis the fight against Boko Haram insurgents.
Several communities and Local Governments that were hitherto under siege of the insurgents have been liberated and the insurgents pushed out.
While troops continue to trail and decimate the remnants of the insurgents in the hinterlands, the security of the liberated communities and towns fall in the hands of the sister security agencies.
The recent dislodgement and further decimation of the insurgents from their enclaves in the Sambisa and the Lake Chad Islands are testimonials to the effective operations of troops against the insurgents.
Additionally, troops are regularly conducting long-range patrols, raids and ambushes to canalise and take out fleeing insurgents. Given all these efforts, it is very astonishing and shocking that such unfortunate comment and allegation is been touted against the loyal and dedicated troops of Operation Lafiya Dole.
Contrary to the comments being circulated, troops earlier deployed in Dapchi were redeployed to reinforce troops at Kanama following attacks on troops’ location at the Nigerian – Nigerien border.
This was on the premise that Dapchi has been relatively calm and peaceful and the security of Dapchi town was formally handed over to the Nigeria Police Division located in the town. Troops’ redeployment was therefore done in tandem with the exigencies of operation and not as misconstrued.
It is thus obligatory, to state that the allegation reportedly attributed to the Governor of Yobe state is misleading and misinforming.
We reiterate our commitment and determination to carrying out our mandate to fight Boko Haram terrorists in the northeast.
We implore members of the public to continue to support us with credible information on the whereabouts of the Boko Haram terrorists.
We would also like to assure the parents, government and the good people of Yobe State and indeed members of the public that we will not rest on our oars in the search and rescue of the abducted school girls and any other persons held captive by the terrorists.
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