The Federal Government has described as “a hoax” and “imaginary” figures the terrorist group, ISIS, claimed represent the number of people killed, or attacks carried out, by Boko Haram in the last two months.
In a statement issued in Abuja, Monday, the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, said the figures were part of the ISIS’ strategy to boost the morale of Boko Haram, whom it described as a dispersed and defeated group.
ISIS had claimed carrying out over a hundred attacks in two months.
”Therefore, the figures being pushed out by ISIS on behalf of Boko Haram represent nothing but a figment of the terrorists’ imagination,” it sad.
Mr. Mohammed said his recent visit to Bama, a territory once declared a caliphate by the sect, revealed that the military was in full control of the battle.
”We therefore wonder where the terrorists have been carrying out their so-called spectacular attacks as indicated by ISIS”.
”Apart from these fake figures, we are aware of the planned release of old videos of Boko Haram attacks in Nigeria through the terrorists’ preferred channel to give the impression that they have continued to carry out spectacular attacks,” the statement said.
He said the videos were neither recent nor genuine.
The statement said the propaganda was a deliberate attempt to dissuade Nigerians and the world from the effects of the war against terror, aimed at reaching a logical stage, before the end of December.
Mr. Mohammed described ISIS’ claim as an attempt to distract the military and strike at what it called the Nigerian military’s all-time high morale.
”But the truth of the matter is that the capability of the military has improved drastically, and there is a higher level of awareness among Nigerians concerning the war against terrorism,” the statement noted.
He said the improved awareness has been felt in an increased support for the military by Nigerians.
He also said more “propaganda” should be expected as similar stories would most likely be publicised to distract Nigeria from its focus of permanently eliminating the Boko Haram sect.
“Nigerians should see the propaganda for what it is: a hoax!” the statement added.
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