The 4 Brigade, Nigerian Army on Saturday disclosed that a soldier arrested for cultism in Edo State and purported to be one of its personnel, was actually a deserted soldier and not its personnel.
A statement by the brigade, signed by its spokesman, Captain Mohammed Maidawa entitled ‘Re: Army Officer Arrested for Cultism in Edo’ said, “The attention of Headquarters 4 Brigade Nigerian Army has been drawn to a media publication dated 23 March, 2019.
“In the said publication, it was alleged that Private Igbavbou Lucky and not Private Opiri Stephen as erroneously published was alleged to have been arrested and paraded by the State Police Command for cultist activities.
“For emphasis, Nigerian Army (NA) is a professional organization with extant policies that regulates the conduct of its personnel.
“The Nigerian Army does not allow any of its personnel to belong to any confraternity such as cult groups and related associations.
“Consequently, any of its personnel who crosses the red line in this regard will face the full rigours of military discipline.
“The alleged case of Private Igbavbou Lucky who was arrested is an isolated case.
“Additionally, it is germane to state that preliminary investigation revealed that the said suspect is not a personnel of 4 Brigade Nigerian Army as erroneously stated in the said publication but a deserter from 101 SF Bn in the North East of the country since January 2019.
“Thus, his conduct is a complete negation of the minimum behavioural conduct expected from a personnel of the Nigerian Army.
“I also wish to use this medium to appeal to journalists to verify their stories before publication in order to avoid negative reportage capable of bringing the image of the Brigade or the Nigerian Army into disrepute.
“The general public should be rest assured that the case will be thoroughly investigated and the military justice system will take it course.”
Army Public Relations, 23 March 2019