The Nigerian Army, has disclosed that soldiers along with elements of Nigeria Police Force and other Security Agencies were indeed at Abuja and Maiduguri offices of Media Trust, to invite the staff of the company over its lead story on Sunday Trust publication, which divulged classified military information, thus undermining national security.
Making this known on Monday in a statement, Director Army Public Relations, Brigadier General Sani Usman, said that in the publication, the newspaper made disclosed details of planned military operations against the Boko Haram terrorists.
“The disclosure of classified security information amounts to a breach of national security and run contrary to Sections 1 and 2 of the Official Secrets Act. It afforded the Boko Haram terrorists prior notice of our plans and giving them early warning to prepare against the Nigerian military, thus sabotaging the planned operations and putting the lives of troops in imminent and clear danger”, he noted.
He further stated, that the invitation of those responsible for divulging military plans was done with the best of intention in order to make them realise the import of such acts to national security, and therefore advised all, particularly journalists, not to worry but engage in their responsive reportage and to be professional as the Nigerian Army has no intention of muzzling the press or jeopardising press freedom.
“We however, wish to enjoin further that they should eschew jeopardizing national security in their reportage. We would not tolerate situation where a publication would consistently side with terrorists and undermine our National institutions.
“We wish to appeal to all, especially the media, to join hands with the Nigerian military and security forces to end terrorism and insurgency in Nigeria.
“We would like to further assure that the invitation is for further investigation and if need be, all those culpable of jeopardising operations security will be prosecuted by the relevant law enforcement agency”, the statement ended.