Boko Haram: UNICEF Sabotaging Our Counterinsurgency Efforts, N’Army Cries Out

In an unprecedented move, the Theatre Command the Nigerian Army’s Operation LAFIYA DOLE, on Friday accused international humanitarian agencies and non-governmental organizations operating in the nation’s troubled North-East of sabotaging its counter insurgency efforts.
In a statement, the Army said: “There is credible information that some of them are indulging in unwholesome practices that could further jeopadise the fight against terrorism and insurgency, as they train and deploy spies who support the insurgents and their sympathizers.”
Specifically, it accused the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF), whose operations in the North East theatre, was suspended until further notice, of engaging in training selected persons for clandestine activities to continue sabotaging the counter terrorism and counter insurgency efforts of troops.
This, the Army continued, does “through spurious and unconfirmed allegations bothering on alleged violations of human rights by the military.”
The organization was accused of abdicating its primary duty of catering for the wellbeing of children and the vulnerable in the area and held the alleged training exercise on Wednesday and Thursday, December 12 and 13, 2018, at the Ministry of Finance Conference Hall, Musa Usman Secretariat, Maiduguri, capital of Borno State the centre of the insurgency war.
The UNICEF training is believed to on how to stay alert for soldiers committing human rights abuses and publicising such a situation interpreted to being capable of undermining the counter-insurgency operations.
The Army in the statement expressed shock that some of these organizations, who it says are insulting the sensibilities of Nigerians, “have been playing the terrorists script with the aim to continue demoralizing the troops who are doing so much to protect the lives of victims of Boko Haram Terrorism and safeguard them from wanton destruction of property and means of livelihood.”
As if providing reasons why they are aiding the terrorists, the Army said the humanitarian organizations “tend to benefit more from expanding the reign of terror on our people.”
While insisting that it will not tolerate any act of sabotage from any individual, group, or organization, the command called on all NGOs and humanitarian agencies to keep to their legitimate norms in the discharge of their duties.
In April, Nigeria’s military declared three UNICEF employees “persona non grata”, in connection with alleged leaks of information about soldiers sexually abusing children in the northeast, people familiar with the matter told Reuters.
The declaration was rescinded days later after pressure from diplomats, the sources said.