By Suleiman Adamu
The Nigerian Army has refuted reports published by some online news medium which alleged that it plans to free two senior bomb experts of the Book Haram terrorist group who were taken into custody after they surrendered to troops in the frontlines.
According to the Army in a statement signed by its Public Relations Director, Brig. Gen. Onyema Nwachukwu, the authors deliberately misrepresented the facts contained in the said report and twisted it to suit whatever purpose they seek to achieve.
The Army said it has become necessary to put issues in their right perspectives since it does not want to be distracted from its main focus of dealing decisively with the threats against peace loving Nigerians.
“It is a known fact that in the recent past, over 1,000 members of Boko Haram and their families have surrendered to the troops due to the intense pressure from troops’ sustained offensive actions. Among those were key leaders of the terrorists group who have renounced their membership and have turned themselves in.”
The Nigerian Army said being a professional military organisation it will continue to act in accordance with the dictates of the Nigerian Constitution, as well as international best practices.
“It must be known that the NA will never encourage any act of lawlessness or extra judicial killings. Accordingly, all surrendered terrorists will be received, processed and passed on to the relevant agencies of Government for further assessment in line with extant provisions.
“The ongoing Operation Safe Corridor is an outfit established by the Federal Government and not the NA. As such, it is absolutely wrong to say that the NA will free repentant terrorists. The NA therefore appeals to the public to disregard the deliberate distortion of facts by these online mediums and continue to support the NA in order to rid the country of terrorism and other forms of insecurity.”
The Chief of Army Staff Lieutenant General Faruk Yahaya has reiterated his admonition to all terrorists groups operating in the country to abandon their illegitimate cause and surrender to troops.