By Adenike Lucas
The Nigerian Army has briefed its lawyers to institute legal action against a news website, The Premium Times Services Limited, over what it called “false, libelous and malicious stories” against the person of the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai and the Nigerian Army.
The Nigerian Army had taken offence to several articles published by the Premium Times, one of which wrongly alleged on December, 21, 2016, that the COAS was to be made to appear before the Code of Conduct Bureau, CCB, “over false asset declaration.”
Lt. Gen Buratai who recently led the Nigerian Army in a victorious battle to recapture Camp Zairo, a last stronghold of the Boko Haram group, was cleared by the CCB on 11 July and 29 September, 2016.
On the 21, October, 2016, the Premium Times claimed that the Nigerian Army had “killed a pastor and labelled him a militant.”
The Nigerian Army stated that the Premium Times had not offered it the opportunity to comment so as “to have a balance” report.
A letter was sent to the Managing Director of the online publication, Dapo Olorunyomi on December 22, 2016, asking that he issues a retraction before December 31, 2016, but the paper refused to do so.
Following its refusal to retract the story, the Director, Army Public Relations, Brigadier General Sani Usman, announced on January 11, 2017, that the Nigerian Army has briefed its lawyers to institute legal action against the medium.
The Editor-in-Chief Musikilu Mojeed says the paper “stand by our stories.”