There is complete chaos in Borno following a total breakdown of order and discipline at the 21 Brigade of the Nigerian Army with soldiers deployed to put an end to the Boko Haram insurgency in the state and rout the insurgents from Sambisa Forest turning against their senior officers and firing gunshots in all directions.
Premium Times reports that people familiar with the matter revealed that the troops complained of being mistreated and then began to shoot indiscriminately, threatening to kill any officer who stands on their way.
According to the source, a military insider said:
“The brigade is based in Bama but is currently deployed at Bula Bello in Sambisa for Operation Rescue Final.
“But suddenly soldiers started mutinying at 6AM today, firing in all directions and threatening to pull out of the operation.
“As some of them fire gunshots, some started preparing vehicles to move out of location. They also warned officers to steer clear or they would be shot dead.
“They are saying their commanders have been treating them badly and telling them lies. As I speak to you, the firing is still going on, and there is confusion everywhere.”
The news source said the commander of the Brigade, Col AG Laka, could not immediately be reached to comment on the issue and the Nigerian Army is yet to issue a statement on the incident.
The spokesperson for the Army, Sani Usman, a brigadier general, when contacted, declined comment on the development.
Since the war against Boko Haram began, there have been repeated cases of mutiny by Nigerian soldiers and the Army has tried over 100 soldiers for the offence.
The worst case happened in May 2014 when troops of 7 Division, annoyed by the death of 12 of their colleagues in a Boko Haram ambush, opened fire on the vehicle of their General Officer Commanding (GOC), Major General Ahmadu Mohammed. They were later arrested, tried and jailed.