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Army refutes military shutdown over COVID-19

The Nigerian Army has refuted links to possible nationwide shutdown on Friday March 27, 2020 as a result off the dreaded COVID-19.

Army Director of Media and Public Relations, Colonel Musa Sagir, disclosed this in a statement, saying, “To put the records straight, the document being quoted was a directive for the Nigerian Army to prepare for possible escalation of the pandemic based on happenings around the world.

“The misinterpretation that government is shutting down the entire country and pulling out the Army on Friday, March 27, 2020 is false and baseless. 

“The military considers the publication and negative interpretation being given the content of the classified document containing information meant for the Nigerian Army personnel as a violation of the Official Secret Act.”

He added that the Army would continue to be professional, proactive and responsive in support of the nation’s constitution, democracy and the Federal Government in line with its constitutional mandate of helping civil authority when called upon to do so. 

Sagir further said the Nigerian Army would leave no stone unturned to support civil authorities in times of national emergencies, insisting that the mischief of some unpatriotic few would not discourage it from working with the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) and other security agencies to keep the country safe.

Meanwhile, the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Abuja Police Command have arrested no fewer than 20 persons for allegedly violating the social distance order aimed at curtailing the spread of Coronavirus.

The police patrol team from the Dutse Alhaji Divisional Police Headquarters had stormed the Sokale Gardens in the area and arrested people, while others ran away.

However, the men and officers were said to be without special medical protective kits as expected, while arresting and hauling people into their van.

Also, The Guardian learnt that the arrested persons were taken to their office, which had no sanitisers, while each of the arrested persons regained their freedom after bailing themselves with N5000 each.

A police officer said the order was from above, but the FCT Police Spokesman, Anjiguri Manza, denied knowledge of the development, adding, “I am not aware of that. It has not reached my table yet, but I will find out and get back to you,” but he never did and did not pick his calls.”

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