By Celestine Okafor (Editor-in-Chief/Defence Correspondent)
The Nigerian Army has said its attention has been drawn to a trending publication by some online news mediums in which facts were allegedly twisted or misrepresented in that report to achieve an alleged pre-determined purpose.
The Nigerian Army said while it does not want to be distracted from its main focus of dealing decisively with the threats against peace-loving Nigerians, it has become necessary to put issues in their right perspectives.
According to a statement to this effect by the Director, Army Public Relations, Brigadier-General Onyema Nwachukwu, the Army stated that "It is a known fact that in the recent past, over 1,000 members of Boko Haram and their families have surrendered to the troops due to the intense pressure from troops' sustained offensive actions. Among those were key leaders of the terrorist group who have renounced their membership and have turned themselves in.
"The Nigerian Army being a professional military organization will continue to act in accordance with the dictates of the Nigerian Constitution, as well as international best practices. It must be known that the NA will never encourage any act of lawlessness or extrajudicial killings. Accordingly, all surrendered terrorists will be received, processed, and passed on to the relevant agencies of Government for further assessment in line with extant provisions.
"The ongoing Operation Safe Corridor is an outfit established by the Federal Government and not the NA. As such, it is absolutely wrong to say that the NA will free repentant terrorists. The NA, therefore, appeals to the public to disregard the deliberate distortion of facts by these online mediums and continue to support the NA in order to rid the country of terrorism and other forms of insecurity.
"The Chief of Army Staff Lieutenant General Faruk Yahaya has reiterated his admonition to all terrorist groups operating in the country to abandon their illegitimate cause and surrender to troops", the statement said. NNL.