The Nigerian Military has deployed Nigerian Air Force (NAF), helicopter gunships to provide close air support to the joint military operation aimed at dislodging Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), controlled Eastern Security Network (ESN).
But a trending video of the military operations showed a scene where the aircraft were raining bullets in Orlu axis of Imo state, hence some screaming headlines ‘military airstrike in Orlu in search of ESN amongst several others.
The Military High Command has, however, maintained a deafening silence on the issue as the Spokesperson of the Nigerian Air Force, Air Vice-Marshal Ibikunle Daramola declined to comment on the matter, saying that he lacks the powers to speak on the military joint operation.
He, however, directed our correspondent to the Coordinator, Defence Media Operation, Major General John Enenche who is one of the few officers empowered to speak on a joint military operation.
Meanwhile, calls and text a message to the mobile number of the Coordinator Defence Media Operation were not responded to.
The joint operation whose code name is also not known as at the time of filing this report was said to have commenced on Thursday noon.
Recall that the Eastern Security Network (ESN), the militia arm of the secessionist Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) in January had a bloody clash with the Nigerian Army from Obinze barracks, where four soldiers were reportedly killed.
“Nigerian soldiers are currently conducting aerial strikes in our areas. Many innocent lives may be lost. They are probably looking for ESN operatives who are checking the activities of killer Fulani herdsmen,” a community head told an online medium.
“People’s homes and marketplaces may be affected. We don’t need aircraft in Orlu. They should go and find the stolen school pupils in Niger State,” another angry resident who spoke to the same online news portal added.
“I have the video. There was an aircraft firing shots possibly in a nearby bush. Very reckless of the Air Force; civilians are all over the place,” another person said.
It could also be recalled that the Nigerian Army in  December 2020 deployed combat helicopters, gun trucks, and soldiers to search some suspected forests in the South-East states where the ESN, launched by Nnamdi Kanu, was using as a hideout.

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