Military calls soldiers who shot at Maiduguri airport ‘unscrupulous’
Nigeria’s military authorities have confirmed the protests and indiscriminate shootings at Maiduguri International Airport by some soldiers deployed to Marte Local Government Area of Borno State to fight Boko Haram terrorists. It attributed the riotous act to misunderstanding of the situation by the “a few unscrupulous troops”.
Some soldiers had protested the deployment complaining that they ought to have been sent back to their families after over three years in Borno State. This, they said, is the routine and to register their displeasure, they turned the airport into a shooting range creating panic within the environment.
Marte LG is one of the areas which had been under serious Boko Haram threat. During the early years of Boko Haram insurgency, Marte was overrun by the terrorists who hoisted their flag in the area but the situation has improved though the insurgents still maintain a presence in the area.
A statement, Monday, by spokesman of Operation Lafiya Dole and Deputy Director, Public Relations, Colonel Onyema Nwachukwu, said: “The Theatre Command on Sunday night witnessed a riotous reaction from a few unscrupulous troops, while conducting a redeployment of troops who are currently deployed at the Maiduguri Airport, following a directive to review troops’ deployment in Maiduguri metropolis in a bid to reinvigorate the security architecture of the city.
“The redeployment became expedient after a recent assessment of the security situation by the Theatre Command. Regrettably however, a few of the troops who had misunderstood the development and erroneously assumed it was going to negatively affect their rotation from the theatre of operation, became agitated and reacted by firing into the air.
“Calm has been restored, as the Theatre Commander, Major General Abba Dikko, has taken charge of the situation after admonishing the troops.”