Nigeria's Defense Chief Musa denies allegations of ethnic cleansing, says military needs more funding

Nigeria's Defense Chief Musa denies allegations of ethnic cleansing, says military needs more funding

Nigeria's Chief of Defense Staff, General Christopher Musa, has apologized to Nigerians on behalf of the military, denying allegations of ethnic cleansing.

On the night of Sunday, December 3, the Nigerian Air Force used an army drone to accidentally bomb civilians in Tudun Biri, Kaduna State, leaving at least 85 villagers dead and around 66 hospitalized.

Musa promised that an investigation would be carried out and that reparations would be made.

“We just want to convey to Nigerians that mistakes are human and are highly regrettable and that we will make amends by ensuring that we look back and see where these mistakes came from to further avoid them. It is our duty to protect civilians and not harm them, especially our own citizens.” He told Arise News.

Reacting to allegations by the Arewa group, which claimed that the act was a deliberate attack due to ethnic differences, Musa denied the allegations.

“Mistakes happen. It has nothing to do with tribe, religion or ethnicity. Anyone with this type of thinking is not being truthful and sincere about it. he said

“Sometimes when people don't have complete information, they tend to react emotionally to it. This is an identifiable error and we will take action to ensure it is resolved.”

“If you saw the footage, it was just the way terrorists move and gather. This was why the pilot felt he needed to engage. But again, we will review it to make sure we are more accurate in the future.”

Musa then called for an update to the approved budget for the military.

“Frankly speaking, the Tinubu regime has really shown us commitment. You can see the budget. In the past, it was heard that large sums of money were being approved for the military. The question is how much do we earn? he added

“Furthermore, we do not manufacture any of these items we use. We buy in dollars and so if you convert the value that was released in the past, the super tucanos that were purchased were about six hundred million dollars, out of a billion. This is almost over.

“How much do you buy aircraft, how much do you buy tanks and ships? You find that with the money given when you convert it to dollars, you are not getting much. The ammunition we buy, we buy in foreign currencies.

“That’s why we must produce what we need. As a country with more than 200 million inhabitants, we have to develop our military constructions, otherwise we will be held responsible.

“Now, even with your money you can't go off the shelf to get the equipment you need, you have to order it and wait to receive it.

“So, when our industrial complex comes into operation and we start producing what we need, I think it will be much better.

“Due to the challenges of obtaining this equipment, we developed our own mechanics. The mechanical department developed capabilities. But we still need more and we know we will achieve more.”

“No country should allow terrorism to begin, otherwise it will be difficult to eradicate it because the center of gravity of a terrorist is not the individual, but the ideology in his mind. So changing the mindset is what will be needed and we will continue to push.

“We have Nigerians who are also doing a lot to trade with them, provide them with fuel and food. If we all come together and stop this, they won't survive.

“It’s a holistic thing and a whole-of-government approach, not just the military.”


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