UPDATED: Nigerian Army counters UN agency over Boko Haram attack on food trucks

Nigerian Army
Nigerian Army

The Nigerian Army on Monday countered a United Nations agency over the casualty from a Boko Haram raid.

The World Food Programme, WFP, an agency of the UN had said its driver and his assistant were among four people killed when Boko Haram attacked food trucks despite military escort.

In an email to PREMIUM TIMES on Sunday, the WFP also said food trucks were taken to an unknown destination by the insurgents.

The army on Monday morning initially denied the killing of civilians in the coordinated attack, but later confirmed the killing of four civilians. It, however, said it was not aware they were staff of the WFP.

Rogers Nicholas, the Theatre Commander, Operation Lafiya Dole, in an SMS to the News Agency of Nigeria gave the army’s initial position.

Mr. Nicholas, a major general, said that the troops escorting the trucks had killed six insurgents and recovered weapons.

He claimed there were no civilian casualties in the attack, adding that he was at Dikwa when the incident occurred.

“There was an ambush but the soldiers killed six Boko Haram insurgents and recovered weapons. No civilian was killed.

“I was in Dikwa that Saturday and this happened while I was within,” Mr. Nicholas said.

An army spokesperson later clarified the claims, saying four civilians were killed.

“The troops however fought through the ambush, overpowered the insurgents and killed six of them. The troops also captured 3 AK 47 rifles, 3 locally fabricated fire arms, 4 magazines and a belt of 7.62 mm ammunition,” O. Nwachukwu, a colonel, said in a statement.

“Sadly four persons died in the encounter. Although none of the persons killed in the ambush has so far been identified as a staff of the UN, this Headquarters considers the lives of all citizens and indeed all humans sacrosanct, which must be protected by troops even at a supreme price.

“The situation has been brought under control and further exploitation of the general area is currently being carried out by Mobile strike Team of Operation Lafiya Dole.”

Neither the army general nor the colonel spoke on the missing food trucks mentioned by the WFP.

The WFP in its email said a driver of its hired truck and three other persons were killed in the attack at Ngala in Gamboru-Ngala Local Government Area of Borno.

Adedeji Ademigbuji, the Communication Associate of the WFP, said in the statement that a convoy of the WFP’s hired trucks conveying food items were attacked by gunmen 35 kilometres South-west of Ngala on Saturday.

He disclosed that the convoy escorted by the military was conveying foodstuff for distribution to the vulnerable Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in the area.

He said that a driver of the hired truck, his assistant and two other persons were killed in the attack.

“WFP confirmed that a convoy escorted by the Nigerian Military including WFP hired trucks were subject of attack by armed groups, 35 km southwest of Ngala in Borno, on Dec. 16.

“Four people, including the driver of a WFP hired truck and his assistant, were killed in the incident.

“WFP is working with the authorities to determine the whereabouts of the trucks,” Mr. Ademigbuji said.


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  • Jon

    There is no doubt that the fight or war against Northern Boko Haram is allegedly being compromised by their Hausa /Fulani brothers.

    • forestgee

      Obviously, there is scarcity of truth in the war against Boko Haram. Lack of transparency and accountability will follow that $1bn they need from Excess Crude Account

    • paul irumundomon

      They set up boko haram In the first place, the north have their hands full. El Refai, said he has travelled all the way to Mali, to pay some of book haram to stop the killings, that tells the story how the whole north is behind boko haram

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  • Wetin Naija

    Only fools will believe Nigeria Army. Nigeria Army will never tell the truth

  • FreeNigeria

    Nigerian Army of liars and incompetence

  • paul irumundomon

    That is my country, where almost everyone lies and I denials. We have taken it as a new normal, very much so, since this sick old man became president.

  • TAWANDA INCOMMUNICADO

    The UN agency has no need to misrepresent facts but the Nigerian Army hates truth therefore lies must be disseminated to the masses no matter the circumstance. Propaganda and lies have natural limitations but the APC regime does not recognise that, everything about them is based on lies.

  • share Idea

    Nigerian Army and other institutions like lies but under this administration, lies and propaganda have been promoted to a level never seen since the birth of this country. Nigeria we hail thee

  • Fernando Luis

    I don’t know why people their name ends with “ai” Sabi talk lie well. For example lai Mohammed and Buratai. Is terrible!

  • Biafran 1967

    WFP know of the whereabouts of their employees more than the army. The army are disrespecting the dead by denying their very existence.

  • CousinBrother

    Given that Nigeria Army and this present government are the major supplier of food, money and ammunitions to the insurgents (Boko Haram to be specific), I think it is a waste of time/energy/resources on the pat of the UN to get involved in this mud fighting.