A social media clip purportedly showing the activities of the Nigerian Army in Orlu, Imo State has been described as fake.
The Deputy Director, Public Relations Department, 82 Division of the Nigerian Army, Col. Aliyu Yusuf said this in a statement on Wednesday in Enugu.
The trending video had alleged that troops of 302 Artillery Regiment, Onitsha, were given orders to commence the killing of people at Orlu market.
However, Yusuf said the video is the handiwork of unpatriotic individuals trying to deliberately use social media to spread lies about the army and cause fears in the mind of the citizens.
He said: “The attention of the Division had been drawn to an orchestrated video clip by an unpatriotic element, being circulated on the social media, claiming to be a soldier by name Joseph from Bayelsa.
“Preliminary investigation revealed that it was a calculated attempt to maliciously fabricate sensational stories to cause resentment and smear campaign against Nigerian Army Internal Security Operations.
“The supposed individual in the video was not bold enough to reveal his true identity as claimed or present his so called military uniform and identity card which were deliberately obscured to deceive innocent target audience.
“The Nigerian Army recognises the right of citizens to hold and share opinions on social media and not to spread divisive contents by unpatriotic individuals.”
The statement while urging the public to disregard the video added: “This mischievous misrepresentation of facts, misinformation and fabrication of outright falsehood as deliberately captured in the video clip are been orchestrated in the social media to tarnish the good image and reputation of the military.
“This great disservice is not acceptable by any standard.
“It is worth to note that Nigerian Army troops deployed for Internal Security Operations are guided by extant rules and regulations as stipulated in Nigerian Army Code of Conducts and Rules of Engagement in line with global best practices.
“The general public is therefore urged to disregard the false information contained in the video.”
Meanwhile, Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodinma on Tuesday maintained that he was right to have invited the military into Orlu community of the state.
The Governor said the military invasion is justified because certain criminal elements threatening the peace of the state had to be flushed out.
He made the submission while speaking with newsmen shortly after meeting President Muhammadu Buhari at the State House in Abuja.
Despite the criticisms that have followed his action, Uzodinma on Tuesday maintained that the military invasion of Orlu is justified.