The Nigerian Army on Tuesday dismissed a report of impending operation in Benue, Taraba, Plateau and Kogi as fake.
The fake report was purported to have emanated from Defence Headquarters, Abuja.
Director, Army Public Relations, Brig.-Gen. Onyema Nwachukwu, stated in Abuja that the fake publication was the handiwork of some fifth columnists bent at misleading the public.
Nwachukwu stressed that the information conveyed in the said document was outright falsehood calculated to spread fake news to create undue tension and undermine the Nigerian Army.
According to him, a scrutiny of the fake press statement with a fake army letterhead indicates a non-existent nomenclature in the Armed Forces – “The Nigeria Defence Headquarters Abuja Sector (1) Operation Whirl Stroke.’’
“Additionally, there is no such appointment as `General Operation Commander’ in the Armed Forces of Nigeria.
“Furthermore, the fake press statement was riddled with syntax, grammatical and spelling errors which are in dissonance with Nigerian Army’s press statements,’’ he stated.
Nwachukwu added that the Nigerian Army, being a staunch defender of Nigeria’s sovereignty, had over time, maintained robust civil-military relations with the people of Benue, Taraba, Plateau and Kogi.
He stated also that it was untoward that mischief-makers could attempt to ruin the highly-valued relationship with their intent for extra judicial killing in the course of conducting the purported operations.
According to him, the Nigerian Army has always sustained the flow of information to the general public whenever the need arises through appropriate media channels.
“Considering the damage that this misinformation could cause to members of the public, the army wishes to warn unscrupulous persons or groups employing misinformation to aggravate insecurity in the country to desist from the practice.
“They should rather join other well-meaning and law-abiding citizens to support the Nigerian Army in countering terrorism, insurgency, banditry and other forms of criminality in the country,” Nwachukwu stressed.