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MURIC Urges Government, Nigerians Not To Be Complacent On Insurgency War

By Ayo Balogun

As the preparation for this year’s Christmas reaches peak, the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) has warned Nigerians to be conscious that the renewed war against the dreaded Boko Haram by the troops “is not over until it is over”.

While noting that the onslaught being launched on the terrorists and which has reduced them to appear like a wounded lion, it added this informed present insurgents’ guerrilla tactics, warning that the insurgents might want to strike during yuletide, at least to make a point.

The association in a statement signed by its Director, Prof. Ishaq Akintola called for tremendous coordination among the different arms namely: the army, the police, the secret services, the civil defence.

It also appealed to all Nigerians to be on the “tiptoes of unprecedented alertness especially in public places like airports, markets, motor parks and schools”.

MURIC advised officials in churches and mosques to set up internal networking capable of facilitating communication among their followers, saying this would enable members who have useful information but who have no easy and quick access to security agents to pass such information to church or mosque officials who are close to them.

“Strange faces must be reported immediately before they can wreak any havoc. People who stand together survive together” the group restated.

In the meantime, the organization has commended the Chief of Army (COAS), Lt. Gen. Tukur Yusuf Buratai, for reviewing the case of the soldiers and directed that the sentences on 66 convicted soldiers.

The Nigerian Army last weekend on the approval of COAS commuted the death sentence on the soldiers to 10 years imprisonment.

“However, we deem it necessary to further advance the cause of the 66 soldiers. We still believe very strongly that they do not deserve additional punishment for two good reasons. Firstly, these soldiers asked to be better equipped before being sent to face insurgents who were better armed. This is only reasonable as dead soldiers cannot protect Nigeria’s territorial integrity.

“Secondly, the soldiers have received enough punishment already having been in custody for the past eight months. It is noteworthy that they had allegedly fed themselves during the period.

“The case of 54 soldiers out of the 66 is even different because it appears that both the army and the press have lumped them together. It is necessary to separate the wheat from the chaff and put issues in their proper context”, MURIC pleaded.

MURIC also appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari as the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces to grant the soldiers Presidential pardon.

The association stated freedom for the 66 soldiers would amount to the psychological defeat of Boko Haram as well as a morale booster for Nigerian soldiers fighting insurgents.

Boko Haram insurgents, MURIC demanded must not rejoice as they kill and punish the soldiers with our own hands. It stressed that Nigerians would consider freedom for the 66 soldiers as another victory in the current war against corruption.

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