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Chief of Defence Staff pleads for understanding amidst drone attack fallout

He urged the public not to demoralise the troops, noting the military's determination to end insecurity in the nation.

Maj-Gen-Christopher-Musa, Chief of Army Staff (Credit: Premium Times Nigeria)

General Musa made this plea during the graduation ceremony of the Senior Executive Course 45 of the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS) near Jos.

Speaking at the event, General Musa stated that the incident was not intentional, expressing deep regret for the unfortunate occurrence. "We are meant to protect Nigerians and cannot be seen killing them," he stated.

He urged the public not to demoralise the troops, noting the military's determination to end insecurity in the nation.

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In an interview at the Chief of Defence Staff Armed Forces and Security Agencies Half Marathon Championship 2023 in Abuja, General Musa reassured Nigerians of the military's commitment to preventing a recurrence of the mistake.

He thanked the public for their understanding and support while stating the collective effort to restore peace and tranquility in Nigeria.

However, a group of lawyers from the North, the Concerned Northern Lawyers Forum, has expressed its intention to take legal action against the federal government over the drone attack.

The group finds the military's claim of the incident being accidental deeply troubling and unacceptable, stating that such occurrences should never have happened, especially during a time of celebration.

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Spokesperson for the forum, Nafi’iu Abubakar, noted their duty to ensure justice for the victims, demanding adequate compensation for the affected families. The forum urged the federal government to conduct a thorough and independent investigation into the incident, holding those responsible accountable for their actions.

In response to the drone attack, the House of Representatives has expressed its concern, describing the incident as casting a somber mood over the hearts of all Nigerians. Chairman of the House Committee on Defence, Babajimi Benson, commended the Nigerian Army for promptly admitting responsibility but called for caution and precision in military operations, especially in areas with civilian populations.

The committee appealed to the military to prioritise the safety of civilians, urging the implementation of measures to prevent similar occurrences in the future. Benson assured the public that the House Committee on Defence would closely monitor investigations and collaborate with the military authorities to prevent the recurrence of such unfortunate incidents.

Northern senators forum visits victims

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A delegation of the Northern Senators Forum, led by Chairman Senator Abdul Ningi and Senator Abdul’aziz Yari Abubakar, visited injured victims and bereaved families in Kaduna. Expressing their deepest condolences, the forum announced a donation of ₦58 million to the victims from the 58 Northern Senators.

Senator Yari condemned the incident, expressing grief for the affected families and calling for stronger measures to prevent accidental deaths. The senators welcomed the ongoing investigation into the cause of the accident and pledged their commitment to supporting their constituents in times of need.

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