- The Nigerian military has attributed the mistake bombing at an internally displaced persons camp in Rann, Borno state to lack of appropriate markings
- The military said a board of inquiry was constituted to investigate the incident
- It further recommended that all locations where humanitarian activities take place in the Theatre of operation should be marked appropriately for ground and aerial identification
The Nigerian military has attributed the mistake bombing at an internally displaced persons camp in Rann, Borno state to lack of appropriate markings.
In a statement released by the Defence Headquarters on Saturday, July 23, on the bombing and two major issues in the force, the military said boards of inquiries were constituted.
The DHQ in its statement said it was provided with the reports of all the boards constituted, to investigate the various incidents.
The two other incidents are: the Armed clash between some Nigerian Army and Police personnel in Damaturu, Yobe state on April 11, and the clash between Nigerian Navy and Police personnel in Calabar, May 30.
The DHQ said that by the ethics of the military professional, "all the reports were harnessed by a final Board at the Defence Headquarters, to have a clear picture of the incidents."
In its 'comprehensive reports of each incident', the DHQ said the unfortunate airstrike on Rann IDP camp on January 17, was because people were not expected to amass at the location of the camp.
The DHQ said: "The main reason that caused the unfortunate airstrike near the IDP camp at Rann, was lack of appropriate marking of the area, near the Camp where the IDPs were struck."
Hitherto, people were not expected to amass at that location. Furthermore, the location was not reflected in the operational map as a humanitarian base.
The normal pattern for Boko Haram Terrorists to form up, before attacking innocent civilians and troops is to amass," the statement said.
The military added that mass of people figured at the Rann camp appeared like the place could also be used for terrorists' activities.
"Thus, when mass movement was noticed through aerial satellite observation, it was taken for Boko Haram Terrorists activity, which needed to be neutralized with speed," the DHQ said.
The DHQ further recommended that in order to avoid such occurrence, all locations of humanitarian activities taking place in locations of military operation be marked appropriately.
It said this will enable ground and aerial identification of activities in the area in line with international best practices.
"All locations where humanitarian activities take place in the Theatre of operation should be marked appropriately for ground and aerial identification in line with international best practices.
"The geographical and spatial coordinates of all areas of humanitarian activities within the Theatre, should be provided to the Theatre Command Headquarters.
"There should be timely and mandatory exchange of information between stakeholders, for all activities in the Theatre of operation," the DHQ added in its recommendation.
Meanwhile for the clash between some Nigerian Army and police personnel in Damaturu, the DHQ said a strict centralized operational and administrative control should be exercised on all security agencies serving under the operation
"Offenders in the incident are to be sanctioned appropriately, to serve as deterrence to other personnel in the Theatre of operation.
"The outcome of all disciplinary action, should be communicated to other parties," it said.
Also on the clash between Nigerian Navy and Police Personnel in Calabar, the report revealed that the crisis escalated from a misunderstanding between a naval rating and a police officer.
It also recommended that: "The Nigerian Navy and Police, should institute further investigation to identify erring personnel for sanctions, security services should periodically remind their personnel to always comply with standing regulations, at all times and places.
Further on the matter, all Nigerians and the general public have been urged by the DHQ to support the Armed Forces of Nigeria to tackle security challenges, while the troops remain committed to carrying out its roles professionally.
You can watch this NAIJ.com video of Nigerian Air Force operations against Boko Haram: