Desist from taking pictures and videos during operations, Army tells troops

The Nigerian Army has called on its personnel to stop taking pictures and videos during operational engagements.

This is coming days after a video surfaced online which showed soldiers carrying out a raid on a community in Enugu.

Spokesperson of the 82 division of the army in Enugu, Abubakar Abdullahi had said contrary to some reports based on the video, soldiers did not burn houses during the raid.

“Troops of Joint Security Team have raided a suspected Indigenous People of Biafra/Eastern Security Network (IPOB/ESN) hideout located in Mgbowo, Awgu Local Government Area on 1 November 2021. During the night operation, two ring leaders of IPOB/ ESN were arrested. The suspects are currently undergoing interrogation with a security agency,” Abdullahi said.

“It should be noted that, contrary to IPOB/ESN propaganda video, there was no incident of indiscriminate firing or unprovoked burning of houses during the raid. The joint operation in Agwu was conducted in the night and there was no destruction of any private property involved.”

In a memo dated October 27 and seen by TheCable, the army described the practice of troops recording operations as “worrisome”.

“Recent happenings reveal that troops are still in the habit of taking pictures or videos while conducting operations. The habit has become worrisome as it goes contrary to the social media policy emplaced by the AFN and also portends dire consequences especially on the personal security of troops,” the memo reads.

“It would be recalled that several directives have been given with regards to aforementioned. This continued act, therefore, suggests the need for continuous sensitisation of troops at various theatres.

“In view of the foregoing, I am directed vide reference A to respectfully direct your direct formations and units under command to continually sensitise troops to desist from taking pictures and videos of operational engagements in their various AORs.”

Also speaking on the development, Onyema Nwachukwu, army spokesperson, said publication of operational engagements is expected to be carried out by authorised personnel.

“The Nigerian Army has more often than not published her activities, including operational engagements, employing the use of both still and motion visuals. What the Nigerian Army is emphasising is that we cannot afford to let our personnel do things unprofessionally in violation of extant codes of conduct,” he said.

“As a reputable national institution, we have a directorate of the Nigerian Army which is officially authorised to bring the public up to speed on the activities of the NA. These are personnel trained to professionally conduct audiovisual documentation of all NA activities. It is not an all comers’ affair. This is in tandem with global organisational best practices.

“The Nigerian Army cannot afford to do things haphazardly in these times where the media is besieged by vendors and peddlers of fake news and misinformation. In this age, all forms of strategic communication with regards to the NA must be done professionally. This is the position of the NA.”


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