Michael Olugbode in Maiduguri
The military thursday met in Maiduguri, Borno State, saying it had come out with a strategic plan to rescue the 110 abducted Dapchi schoolgirls.
As part of its strategy, the military is seeking the support of the media and all other stakeholders in its rescue mission for the abducted girls.
At the meeting thursday in Maiduguri to plan the strategies to be adopted in the rescue of the girls believed to have been kidnapped by Boko Haram, were the service chiefs who sat with the leadership of the counter-insurgency operations in the North-east (Operation Lafiya Dole).
Briefing journalists after a closed-door meeting, the Director Defence Information, Brig-Gen John Agim, said the service chiefs came into the Theatre Command in Maiduguri to review the ongoing military operations, particularly the operation to get back the abducted Dapchi schoolgirls.
Agim disclosed that the Chief of Army Staff, Lt-Gen Tukur Buratai, has solicited the cooperation of the media and all stakeholders in the ongoing operation to rescue the abducted girls.
He said the army chief has asked for the maturity in handling media to prevent speculation.
Buratai said for example, there has been some speculation that the military had employed the services of fishermen and farmers to rescue the girls.
He said: “These speculations in view of Buratai can jeopardise the operations and endanger the lives of the abducted schoolgirls, as well as all those involved in the operations.
“While the military is soliciting for useful information from the public, it has not singled out fishermen and farmers for this assistance to rescue the abducted girls, who are between the ages of 11 and 19.
“Rather, the military is asking for anybody who has useful information for this purpose. What we would be doing henceforth, is to limit publicising strategies used.
“We rather want to discuss and communicate the successes of the rescue operations, rather than talking about the already adopted strategies.”
The girls were abducted by Boko Haram insurgents at Government Girls’ Science and Technical College, Dapchi, Yobe State on February 19.
Dapchi is a farming and herding community, 70 kilometres north of Damaturu, the state capital.