Military Replies Gov. Gaidam, Says It Handed Over Dapchi To Police, Dismisses Claims On Troops’ Withdrawal As Misleading


By Sadiq Umar – The Nigerian military on Monday dismissed claims by the governor of Yobe State, Ibrahim Gaidam that the withdrawal of troops from Dapchi paved the way for the abduction of 110 schoolgirls of Government Girls Science Technical College in Dapchi by Boko Haram, describing it as misleading.

The Theater Commander of Operation Lafiya Dole said the military left the area for exigency operation elsewhere and handed over the security of the area to the Nigerian Police.

In a statement signed by spokesman of the Operation Lafiya Dole, the military high command in the Counter terrorism war, Col Onyema Nwachukwu, the military said the allegation by the governor was misleading and misinforming.

Mr. Gaidam had blamed the latest attack and kidnapping of the students from their dormitory by insurgents last Monday on military who according to him withdrew the troops stationed in the area a week earlier before the attack

But the statement said that contrary to the governor’s allegation, troops earlier deployed in Dapchi were redeployed to reinforce troops at Kanama following attacks on troops’ location at the Nigerian – Nigerien border.

It said the redeployment was premised on conviction that Dapchi has been relatively calm and peaceful and that the security of the town was formally handed over to the Nigeria Police Division located in the town.

The statement added that troops’ redeployment was done in tandem with the exigencies of operation and not as misconstrued.

“Although this Headquarters will not attempt to join in any blame game, it is very expedient to set the record straight for the benefit of posterity,” it said.

Adding that, “in carrying out its mandate to counter terrorism and insurgency in north eastern Nigeria, Operation Lafiya Dole has been alive to its responsibilities vis a vis the fight against Boko Haram insurgents.

“Several communities and Local Governments that were hitherto under siege of the insurgents have been liberated and the insurgents pushed out, while troops continue to trail and decimate the remnants of the insurgents in the hinterlands, the security of the liberated communities and towns fall in the hands of the sister security agencies.

“The recent dislodgement and further decimation of the insurgents from their enclaves in the Sambisa and the Lake Chad Islands are testimonials to the effective operations of troops against the insurgents. Additionally, troops are regularly conducting long-range patrols, raids and ambushes to canalise and take out fleeing insurgents.

“Given all these efforts, it is very astonishing and shocking that such unfortunate comment and allegation is been touted against the loyal and dedicated troops of Operation Lafiya Dole.

“We reiterate our commitment and determination to carrying out our mandate to fight Boko Haram terrorists in the north east.

“We also implore members of the public to continue to support us with credible information on the whereabouts of the Boko Haram terrorists.

“We would also like to assure the parents, government and the good people of Yobe State and indeed members of the public that we will not rest on our oars in the search and rescue of the abducted schoolgirls and any other persons held captive by the terrorists,” the military added.


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