Abuja - The Nigerian Army has said it never kidnapped and killed an innocent as was claimed in a recent investigative report according Naij.
In a statement released on Tuesday, November 22, Army acting spokesman Col. Usman Sani Kukasheka described the report which was a result of an investigation by an online media outfit (not NAIJ.com) as an ‘obvious mischief’ aimed at “denigrating the Nigerian Army and tarnish its image”.
The Army also condemned “attempt to portray the Nigerian Army in bad light by labelling it killer of a pastor and manipulation of information”.
“The Nigerian Army did not kill the pastor as alleged, rather, he was killed by his captors who realized that troops were closing on them during precursor to Exercise CROCODILE SMILE.
“It is therefore very mischievous for anyone to ascribe his death to the troops.
“The Nigerian Army is a thorough professional organization with clearly stipulated rules of engagement which is being followed to the letter in any given operation or exercise. For the avoidance of doubt, based on information received, a raid was carried out on a suspected militant camp in Mbelekuru Creek, Ogbogoro Community of Obiakpor Local Government Area of Rivers State on 26th August 2016.
During the raid, 5 suspected militants were killed, 23 of them were arrested and 11 Pump Action Rifles, 2 AK-47 Rifles, 1 Locally Made Revolver Pistol, 292 Cartridges, 99 Rounds of 7.62mm ammunition, 1 AK-47 magazine loaded with 28 rounds of 7.62mm ammunition, 3 Power generating sets, 1 camp Gas cooker, 2 shovels, 3 Cutlasses, 1 rain boat, 1 handbag containing 2 mobile telephone handsets, 1 wristwatch, a photograph, 11 mobile telephone handsets, 3 INEC voters cards, 2 SIM cards and 1 memory card were recovered.
News24 reported that a man the Nigerian Army said its soldiers killed as a senior militant in the restive Niger Delta, was actually a clergyman who had been kidnapped days before.
The Army said the man, Andrew Anthony, was killed late August when soldiers raided a hideout of militants in Rivers State ahead of the formal launch of “Operation Crocodile Smile”.
But investigation showed that soldiers who went for the operation knew Anthony was a kidnap victim, yet the Army, in its official statement, circulated his photograph to the media as one of five top militants killed in the area.
Anthony was abducted by gunmen outside his home at Ada George Road in Port Harcourt on August 18, this newspaper confirmed after weeks of examining the case.
- News 24