Probitas Condemns Military Invasion Of Dura Du, Plateau State.
Probitas, the Nigeria-based civil society group, has condemned the invasion of the Dura Du community in Jos South Local Government, North-Central Nigeria, by members of the Nigerian military.
The soldiers who stormed the community three days ago, claim that they were searching for a missing retired General, Idris Alkali, who was reportedly last seen near a pond in the area.
Probitas questions the legality of this action, which is capable of causing loss of lives and property in an already volatile community.
The Nigerian Army must respect jurisdictional boundaries. The disappearance of a retired General is purely a criminal matter meant to be investigated by the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) and not the Nigerian Army. The fact that Mr Alkali is a former Major-General, does not give the army the right to usurp the powers of the Nigeria Police.
This mission is being headed by Brigadier-General Umar Mohammed, the Chief of Staff of Operation Safe Haven. Brigadier-General Umar Mohammed's unilateral decision to drain a local pond, revered by community members, must be resisted by the government, civil society and environmental activists.
The right thing would be to hand this matter over to the police and to take into consideration the concerns of locals who fear that the army is planning a full-scale desecration of their community. The authorities must consider other alternatives to draining the community's pond such as using deep sea divers and underwater cameras.