The Nigerian Army has cautioned Islamic scholar, Sheikh Ahmed Gumi, against making divisive and disparaging utterances against the military institutions.
It stated that the army did not deploy its troops along ethnic or religious lines as stated by the cleric during his interaction with bandits.
The army spokesman, Brig. Gen. Mohammed Yerima, stated this in a statement in reaction to a video in which Gumi accused non-Muslim soldiers of attacking the bandits on Monday.
The military accused Gumi of deliberately wanting to “disparage the Nigerian Army to portray it in bad light.”
“While the Nigerian Army would not want to join issues with the respected Sheikh Ahmed Gumi, it is, however, important to restate that the Nigerian Army as a national institution, does not deploy its troops along ethnic or religious lines,” the statement reads.
“Therefore, Sheikh Ahmed Gumi and other opinion merchants are please enjoined to exercise restraint not to drag the image and reputation of one of the most reliable national institutions to disrepute.
“The Nigerian Army remains the pride of the nation and has continually defended the territorial integrity of this great nation. Comments suggesting to mudslide the image and reputation of the Nigerian Army are not only inimical but tended towards creating bad blood amongst Nigerians.
“Furthermore, most operations conducted by the Nigerian Army were done in strict adherence to rules of engagement, code of conduct and respect for the fundamental human rights of the citizenry without any exception.
“It is, therefore, disturbing that an opinion leader would deliberately want to disparage the Nigerian Army to portray it in bad light.”