…We’re only searching for missing soldiers – Nigerian Army
Several houses were on Tuesday reportedly razed down by men of the 16 Brigade of the Nigerian Army who allegedly invaded Azagbene Community in Bayelsa State in search of suspected militants who killed two soldiers guarding a crude oil facility in the area.
A community source who preferred anonymity alleged that the onslaught followed militants killing of two soldiers Monday night.
“The well armed suspected militants who came in a speedboat, struck on Monday night, leaving two soldiers dead, one other missing and carted away their riffles”, the source said.
Explaining further, he said that after the incident, stern looking soldiers on Tuesday morning invaded the community, burning houses as villagers scamper into the bush for safety.
“When the soldiers entered our community, they directed us to leave because they were going to burn everything to the ground and that anybody that fails to comply with directive would be killed.
“Before some of us left the community, I saw the building of our paramount ruler on fire. Even my family house has been burnt to the ground. As I speak with you, we are suffering for a crime we didn’t commit.”
But when contacted, the spokesman of the 16 Brigade of the Nigerian Army, Maj. Danjuma Jonah, confirmed the death of two of its personnel but denied burning down houses in the community.
“Our men did not burn down houses Azagbene community. We are only combing the community and neighbouring towns in search of one soldier that is missing as a result of the attack that led to the death of two soldiers.
“And we are carrying out the search for the missing soldier in conjunction with leaders of the community”, he said.