The Defence Headquarters has said President Muhammadu Buhari is very safe in his hometown of Daura in Katsina State, despite gunmen abducting over 300 students from a school in the state.
Major-General John Enenche, Coordinator of Defence Media Operations, said this in an interview on Wednesday while speaking on the activities of bandits in the state.
Bandits had last Friday stormed the Government Science Secondary School, Kankara, and abducted over 300 students, hours after President Buhari had arrived in the state on the same day for a week-long private visit.
But Enenche insisted that despite the incident, the President’s safety is guaranteed in his hometown as the Nigerian military is tasked to protect him everywhere he is at all times.
“One of the major tasks of the Armed Force of Nigeria is to ensure the protection of government and state actors and in that regard, the Commander-In-Chief is very safe in Katsina and anywhere that he is or will be at all times,” Enenche said this on Arise TV’s The Morning Show.
The Defence Spokesperson also dismissed claims by terrorist group, Boko Haram, that it kidnapped the students from the school.
Abubakar Shekau, Boko Haram leader, in a recording on Tuesday, had said the abduction of the students was done in order to discourage people from obtaining western education.
But Enenche stated that the terrorist group made the announcement for propaganda purposes, adding that military operations are ongoing to secure the release of the abducted students.
He said: “On the basis of the characteristics of terrorists all over the world from the time of Al-Qaeda, Taliban, Al-Shabaab, all of them, wherever they will boost their ego or show relevance, that is what they will do.
“What did they even do? Somebody spoke on audio and said, ‘I am Shekau.’ Shekau on a secondary note is a brand. All that needs to be done is somebody using his voice. The total aim of terrorists is to instill fear into people even beyond their scope of influence.
“So, it is easy for the layman to agree that it is them (Boko Haram) because even if it is kidnappers or armed robbers, their aim is to instill fear and kill.”
Enenche, however, appealed to the parents of the abducted students to “have short patience” with the military forces.
“With what the military is doing, by the grace of Almighty God, very soon, the children will be back,” he said.