John Enenche, the military spokesperson, has countered the United Nations’ report that over 100 rice farmers were killed on Saturday, November 28, in Zabarmari village, Borno state.
The United Nations had on Sunday, November 29, said that 110 farmers were killed by men suspected to be Boko Haram insurgents at a rice field in Jere local government contrary to the reported 43.
Speaking through its resident coordinator and humanitarian coordinator in Nigeria in a statement, the UN said many other innocent civilians were wounded in the ruthless attack.
But the Nigerian military on Monday, November 30, said the onslaught on farmers in Zabarmari has 43 casualties.
Enenche who spoke during his appearance on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily said more bodies may be discovered in the future but only 43 victims have been identified so far.
“I have to respond, it is coming from the United Nations. This is a source that identified itself that 110 persons specifically were killed.
“Probably we may count up to the figure he gave in the future. But as it is, up till the time I came here, what we have counted with the locals is still 43. And we are hoping that we don’t get beyond that. So that’s the real situation.”
Meanwhile, all the 36 state governors under the aegis of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) have expressed grief over the killing of 43 farmers in Borno state on Saturday, November 28.
In a statement released on Sunday, November 29, by the chairman of the forum, Governor Kayode John Fayemi of Ekiti state, the atrocity, which was carried out by suspected weapon-wielding Boko Haram insurgents, was described as “wicked, unwarranted, and morally reprehensible.”
Fayemi who noted with distress that the killing “raises serious questions on the general security situation” questioned if there is an adequate arrangement to protect the lives of Nigerians living in vulnerable communities.