Michael Olugbode in Maiduguri
The military has said there is an ongoing plan to relocate the residents of Baga in Borno State, a town that recently came under the attack of Boko Haram insurgents.
The military said the planned relocation is to give room for massive bombardment of the terrorist group and to prevent civilian casualties.
The military revealed the plan on Sunday in a signed statement by the Deputy Director, Public Relations in charge of the counter-insurgency operations in the North-east (Operation Lafiya Dole), Col. Onyema Nwachukwu.
The statement said: “Operation LAFIYA DOLE troops in conjunction with Borno State Government are working towards relocating the residents of Baga to safer locations in view of the ongoing military operations in the area.”
The statement however said that there was no basis for the people of Bama, Dikwa and Monguno to vacate their respective communities as there was no immediate threat to them.
It said: “It has been observed that some unscrupulous individuals with likely sinister motives within and outside Borno State, are trying to create panic and unnecessary humanitarian problems for undisclosed reasons.
“It has come to our attention that these people are plotting to instigate the inhabitants of Bama, Dikwa and Monguno communities to abandon their communities and relocate to Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camps for undisclosed reasons.
“The inhabitants of these towns and the general public are to discountenance such calls and remain calm.
“Theatre Command, Operation LAFIYA DOLE and other security agencies will shed more light on the issue in a Security Council meeting with the Borno State Government scheduled to hold on Monday 31st December 2018.”
It urged members of the public to remain calm, stating that: “The military is in firm control to guarantee their safety and security.”
The statement however warned that any attempt to cause further panic through any false alarm would be viewed very seriously.