Major, captain, others held for leaking information to Boko Haram

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Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Tukur Buratai

Fidelis Soriwei, Abuja

The Nigerian Army is holding two officers – a
major and a captain – in connection with alleged
sabotage of the ongoing counter-terrorism
operations in the North-East.

A military source said on Wednesday that the Army
authorities were intensifying efforts to rid the
service of saboteurs in the ongoing counter-
terrorism operations.
It was gathered that the Army commenced a
painstaking but discreet investigations into the
activities of some of its personnel following the
Boko Haram attack on troops’ location in Gashigar,
on October 22, 2016.

The Acting Director, Army Public Relations, Col.
Sani Usman, had said in a statement on Saturday
that 13 soldiers were wounded during a surprise
Boko Haram attack on troops at Gashigar in the
north of Borno State.
Usman had stated that some soldiers were
missing after the attack.
The statement did not give the exact number of
those missing during the Gashigar attack.
It was learnt that both President Mohammadu
Buhari and the Chief of Army Staff Lt. Gen. Tukur
Buratai, were alarmed by the Gashigar attack,
which involved an entire unit.
It was gathered that the Army authorities decided
to conduct a discreet investigation into the
telephone conversation of some of the security
personnel and their civilian counterparts and
uncovered some suspicious activities through the
screening.
A military source said on Wednesday that the Army
was intensifying investigation to unravel two
established cases against the arrested suspects,
which were the leakage of information on troops’
movement to the insurgents and the raising of
funds to finance Boko Haram operations through
cattle rustling.
The source added, “The President was furious and
discussed the matter with the COAS when some of
the heads of that units were ambushed by the
Boko Haram.
“The Army leadership took out time to screen the
communications lines of the officers for several
days without making it known.
“The suspicion was that they have links with some
civilians and the links were traced. They are giving
them vital information concerning the movement of
soldiers.
“How come that the Borno State Governor and
other officials have not been attacked, yet they
ambushed the Chief of Army Staff. They have not
attacked civilians but they attacked the COAS.”
When our correspondent contacted the Acting
Army spokesman, he said investigation into the
matter was ongoing.
He added that the Army would not release
information on the matter in view of the fact that
there was an ongoing planned rescue operation in
the area.
He said, “Investigation is ongoing and once we
conclude, the suspects would be arraigned before
a court of competent jurisdiction.”
Usman, who denied reports that 83 soldiers were
missing in action, said the military did not lose
any soldier to the Gashigar attack.
He, however, stated that the military suspects
would be subject to military laws in accordance
with the law.
Usman had said in a statement on Tuesday that a
total of 32 persons, comprising two military
officers, two soldiers, two policemen and 26
civilians were in custody for allegedly sabotaging
the ongoing operations.

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