Nigerian military authorities have faulted claims by Amnesty International that security forces failed to act on information that a convoy of Boko Haram fighters was heading towards Dapchi in Yobe state to abduct some school girls before the kidnapping of 110 students from their school in the town last month.
AI had in a report released on Monday said based on the findings of team of researchers sent to Dapchi from people, including girls who escaped, parents of the abducted girls, local officials and eyewitnesses and security officials, the military was alerted of advance of Boko Haram to the town multiple times before the abduction of the girls.
AI also said it independently verified a list of Nigerian security officials alerted on 19 February, before and during the raid on the school which, according to the group, was carried out by approximately 50 Boko Haram fighters who arrived the town in a convoy of nine vehicles with Arabic inscriptions, seven Landcruiser trucks, one Hilux and a Canter truck.
But Nigerian military authorities, in a ranting response on Tuesday, said no security force was informed that Boko Haram fighters were advancing towards Dapchi for the abduction of schoolgirls, contrary to the claim of AI.
Brigadier General John Agim, Acting Director Defence Information who said this in a statement also questioned the motive of AI, accusing the organization of aways peddling outright falsehood about the ongoing war against terror in Nigeria in “a calculated attempt to whip up sentiments and mislead unsuspecting Nigerians, demoralize friendly nations and people collaborating with security forces to end the forces of evil in the North-East.
While faulting the claim, the Defence spokesperson said, “The question Amnesty International has not answered satisfactorily is; which of the security forces and what unit was informed that a convoy of Boko Haram fighters were heading towards Dapchi where they abducted Dapchi school girls?
“What was the telephone numbers used to inform the Military or the Police? Why has AI refused to communicate its findings with the Federal Government’s Committee set up to investigate what happened before, during and after Dapchi girls abduction?
“Is AI trying to undermine the outcome of this committee? The answer is simple, AI is not ready to contribute towards finding a solution to our problems, if anything, they are ready to complicate the problems.”