DEFENCE Headquarters, DHQ, yesterday, disowned the figure being bandied by the United Nations over Sunday’s tragic event in Borno State, insisting that 43 and not 110 rice farmers were murdered by the dreaded terrorist Boko Haram group at Jere Local Government Area of Borno State.
The coordinator, defense media operations, Maj. Gen. John Enenche, made this clarification on Monday morning while featuring on Channel’s Television’s breakfast show – Sunrise Daily – monitored by our correspondent.
Enenche said that 43 corpses were recovered from the incident scene in the Zabarmari area, adding that the troops counted the corpses together with the locals and 43 deaths were recorded.
The United Nations Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Nigeria, Edward Kallon, said that “At least 110 civilians were ruthlessly killed and many others were wounded in this attack.”
Kallon who made this disclosure in a statement added that “I am outraged and horrified by the gruesome attack against civilians.”
Recall that the terrorists were reported to have tied up the farmers, who were working on rice fields, before slitting their throats like animals taken to the slaughter.
Meanwhile, Enenche while debunking the figure of casualties presented by the United Nations said, “I knew the issue is going to come up particularly because it is coming from the United Nations and not a source that does not want to be identified. This is a source that has identified itself that a 110 were murdered.”
He further explained that he contacted the field commanders, and they gave him a synopsis of what happened.
“Of course, some people ran into the bush, and they started coming back and trickling in. As of 2 pm on Sunday, I called them, and they got back to me at about 7 pm, still counting, looking if they will recover more corpses. We call it exploitation after an operation.”