The military has said the comments of Governor Babagana Zulum of Borno State is demoralising soldiers fighting Boko Haram.
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Zulum had, last month, said the attack on his convoy in Baga, a town in the state, was perpetrated by soldiers and not Boko Haram terrorists. He added that he would deploy hunters to secure the region if the soldiers could not.
But after the military’s investigation into the attack, Felix Omoigui, a major-general and deputy theatre commander of Operation Lafiya Dole, said the governor’s claims were untrue.
“The governor of Borno state believed these allegations levelled against troops of the 19 Brigade in Baga given his recent utterances,” he said.
“Remarks of highly placed persons are capable of demoralising the troops which would negatively impact on operations and the confidence of the locals in the military.
“Allegations of such nature could be avoided if the military authority was contacted on issues concerning troops activities before going public.
“The realisations that the allegation emanated from security agencies could trigger reactions and animosity among troops and attendant negative consequences.”
Omogui also dismissed reports that soldiers were engaged in farming, fishing and other businesses in the area., saying the prohibition of such activities is contained in the standing operating procedures.