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Nigerian Air Force Faces Backlash

Nigerians have levelled a serious allegation against the Nigerian Air Force, NAF, following the recent report indicating that the Force accidentally killed over 30 soldiers in Maiduguri, Borno State, amidst the fierce battle against Boko Haram in the Northern part of the country.

Though the Force had confirmed the report, which the NAF described as accidental (read more here), many Nigerians are still finding it difficult to wrap their heads around the claims that the soldiers were killed by mistake. 

Many Nigerians believe that the killings of over 30 military personnel go beyond what should be regarded as an error or friendly fire as claimed by the NAF.

Some noted that there are indications of possible sabotage or foul play in the incident, given the fact that it was not the first time that the Force will be involved in what it claimed to be an accident.

Reacting to the latest killings blamed on the NAF, many internet users pointed accusing fingers at the Force, noting that some people are making attempts to sabotage the fight against insurgency in the country.

Some comments culled from Twitter show that the Nigerian Air Force has become the latest suspect among the people suspected to be frustrating against Boko Haram.

Nigerian Air Force

@drpenking said, “Nigerian Airforce ‘mistakenly’ bombed Nigerian foot soldiers thinking it’s Boko Haram. So they can’t differentiate between their foot colleagues and enemies? It seems to be more like a setup. The soldiers must have gotten too close to the sanctuary. Pantami can explain further.”

@lollypeezle said, “Nigerian Airforce have killed more Nigerian Soldiers and civilians than they have killed Boko Haram members since this fight began.”

@daramolayinde said, “Nigerian Airforce is guilty of strategically shelling our soldiers at different times. Our defence system is a joke.”

You will recall that in January 2017, personnel of the Nigerian Airforce claimed to had accidentally bombed a camp meant for internally Displaced Persons, IDP near Rann. The bomb killed IDPs, Humanitarian workers for the Red Cross and some reps of Doctors Without Borders. 

Not long ago, a small Nigerian air force passenger plane crashed outside Abuja airport after reporting engine failure to kill all seven people on board. According to Nigerian Air Force Spokesman Ibikunle Daramola, the plane,was heading to the city of Minna. He said the chief of the air force had ordered an investigation into the accident.

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