Army Threatens Actions against Subversive Publications

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Brig.-Gen. Sani Usman

• Deploys 40 trucks, armoured tanks to fight insurgents

Kingsley Nwezeh in Abuja

The Nigerian Army yesterday said it would begin to monitor and take actions against masterminds of subversive propagandists for their false publications designed to dampen the morale of troops on the war fronts

Army’s Director of Public Relations, Brig. Gen Sani Usman, also raised alarm over attempts to politicise and derail the ongoing fight against terrorism and insurgency in the country.

This is coming as the Nigerian Army yesterday deployed 40 trucks and armoured tanks laden with battle-ready soldiers to the Baga area of Borno State to fight the insurgents.

According to the army’s spokesman, some disgruntled elements are recycling video clips and old interviews of disgruntled soldiers, as well as inaccurate reports on the ongoing operations to create sense of insecurity in the country.

He threatened that the law will take its course against people behind such concerted efforts to ridicule the efforts of the military in ensuring peace and security of the country.

Usman said: “The Nigerian Army has noted with great concern the concerted efforts by some unpatriotic elements to politicise and derail the ongoing fight against terrorism and insurgency in the country.

“This is manifested in the recent systematic releases and recycling of old BHT propaganda video clips, old interviews of disgruntled and cowardly soldiers, as well as false and inaccurate news reports by some section of the media.

“We regrettably further observed the unscrupulous elements are also perfecting strategy to rubbish the government’s efforts in the provision of safety and security for her citizens.

“They are determined to dampen troops’ morale especially in the North East so the troops will become compromised against the war efforts and complicate the security situation in the country for selfish and cheap political gains and expediency.

“We would like to reiterate that Nigeria is at war with Boko Haram terrorists, in any form or guise that they may manifest and strongly warn these subversive elements to desist from these unwholesome efforts.

“We would like to warn that the Nigerian Army will no longer tolerate these subversive acts and sabotage aimed at dampening troops’ morale, affect their performance and to finally abandon the war.

“We will continue to monitor subversive propaganda and take necessary action against perpetrators,” he said.

Soldiers on patrol also neutralised three female suicide bombers in Dikwa, Borno State.

A statement by the Public Relations Officer of Operation Lafiya Dole, Colonel Onyema Nwachukwu said the troops also recovered one rocket propelled grenade and a suicide vest at the scene of the encounter.

In a renewed bid to contain the terrorists in Baga, the Nigerian Army yesterday deployed 40 trucks and armoured tanks laden with battle-ready soldiers.

The terrorists overran military bases in Baga three days ago, leaving a trail of blood and destruction.

The deployment is coming as the Army warned against involvement in sabotage and subversive acts by “disgruntled elements”.

It said contrary to reports, Maiduguri-Monguno Road was not closed to traffic.

Military trucks and armoured vehicles from Borno state capital Maiduguri arrived late Sunday at the garrison town of Monguno, 135 kilometres (84 miles) away, in readiness for the offensive, two military officers and militia sources told AFP on condition of anonymity.

“Military assets have been deployed to Monguno in preparation for an operation to recapture Baga from Boko Haram terrorists,” said the first military officer.

Monguno residents reported seeing 40 military trucks carrying troops on Sunday evening.

“It is a marching order from the highest quarters to troops to get Baga back from Boko Haram terrorists who are now occupying the town,” a second military source said.

“The offensive will start anytime soon,” he added.