By Joy Baba
Defence Headquarters, Abuja has denied allegation of extra-judicial killing of Muslims and people of Fulani ethnic group by the Nigerian military, as indicated in the statement issued by the Secretary General of Jama’atul Nasril Islam (JNI), Dr. Khalid Abubakar Aliyu.
According to its own statement signed by the Director of Defence Information, (DDI) Major-General Chris Olukolade, the army described the JNI statement as spurious and inflammatory.
Olukolade, in the statement, said much as the military is reluctant to join issues with a respectable religious organisation like the JNI, the need to set the records straight made their response imperative.
According to the statement: “The Nigerian military remains non-partisan, non-sectarian and will continue to be the symbol of patriotism and a unifying factor in the face of threats to national sovereignty.
“Contrary to the false claims, no law-abiding individual, faith, ethnic group or organisation is being targeted as alleged by the JNI. It is unfortunate that the unjust imputation is coming from respectable and responsible organisation like the JNI.
“We urge the body not to join in the fray of propagandists, who are bent on discrediting the genuine efforts at finding solutions to the nation’s security challenges.
“The authorities have no reason to take side or shield anyone from justice. Individuals apprehended in the course of counter-terrorism campaign will continue to have access to justice as provided by law”.
The statement further said that the Armed Forces comprises Nigerians from all religious persuasions and cannot be used against any particular religion as purported, adding that the military will not be distracted by unfair imputations from any quarter.