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Calm Returns To Maiduguri Airport After Soldiers Unrest

Valentine Chinyem

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Following protest by soldiers stationed at the Maiduguri Airport over their deployment, the Nigerian Army has said calm has been finally restored.

It will be recalled that the Maiduguri Airport was seized for two hours on Sunday by riotous troops, who claim to have spent over four years fighting the dreaded terrorist sect, Boko Haram, without deployment to see their families as the norms demands. They were however posted to another area of the state, Marte to continue with the fight but protested, saying their deployment should be outside the war theatre and not within.

Describing the protesting soldiers as ‘unscrupulous, Colonel Onyema Nwachukwu, Deputy Director Public Relations, Operation Lafiya Dole Theatre Command, said in a statement, that the command was conducting a redeployment of soldiers at the Maiduguri Airport, following a directive to review troops’ deployment in Maiduguri metropolis, to boost the security architecture of the city.

He noted that calm has since been restored at the airport, as the Theatre Commander, Major General Abba Dikko promptly took charge of the situation after addressing and admonishing the troops.

He said, “The Theatre Command yesterday witnessed a riotous reaction from a few unscrupulous troops while conducting a redeployment of troops who are currently deployed at the Maiduguri Airport, following a directive to review troops’ deployment in Maiduguri metropolis in a bid to reinvigorate the security architecture of the city.

“The redeployment became expedient after a recent assessment of the security situation by the Theatre Command. Regrettably however, a few of the troops who had misunderstood the development and erroneously assumed it was going to negatively affect their rotation from the theatre of operation became agitated and reacted by firing into the air.

“Calm has however been restored, as the Theatre Commander, Major General Abba Dikko has promptly taken charge of the situation after addressing and admonishing the troops.

“The Theatre Command undoubtedly considers this ugly incident quite regrettable and appropriate measures are being taken to forestall a recurrence.

“Members of the general public are please enjoined to remain calm and go about their normal activities as the situation has been put under firm control.”