The Defence Headquarters, Abuja, has said its troops now quarantine and give face masks to Boko Haram suspects, bandits and others arrested in the line of operation.
Major General John Enenche, coordinator of DHQ’s Media Operations, stated this during a press conference in Abuja.
Enenche disclosed that the military will be training a total of 300 medical personnel, and will deploy them to 21 military hospitals nationwide, to support government’s efforts at tackling coronavirus.
“We quarantine; we have these facilities. The COVID-19 has changed the way things are done. Before two weeks into the pandemic, we already produced our face masks and it is a mixed family when you are on operation – the domestic and the extended,” he said.
“The extended family are the visitors you will get, the captured enemies and surrendered enemies and you have to treat them. So, again for the overall safety, these measures have to be put in place. If someone is surrendering, the best you do is to first maintain social distancing.
“Once you maintain social distancing, you give them the directive to move forward, and then you give them the face masks to wear. We have many face masks as produced by the Defence Industries Corporation of Nigeria. The army ordered for several thousands of face masks too and sent them to the North-East.”
He added: “We don’t just get the suspects and carry them raw like that. No, those are the measures we put in place. So, COVID-19 has changed the face of our operations and made us compliant with the new health standards”.
Enenche noted that the armed forces will be conducting further medical COVID-19 training for personnel in eight military centres across the country.
“The Armed Forces of Nigeria COVID-19 case management training will be conducted in eight centres which are Headquarters 1 Division, Kaduna; 6 Division, Port Harcourt; 7 Division, Maiduguri; 81 Division, Lagos; and Headquarters 82 Division, Enugu.
“Others are Headquarters Eastern Naval Command Calabar, Headquarters Tactical Air Command, Makurdi and Headquarters Guards Brigade, Abuja. At the end of this training, the total number will be 300 personnel,” he further said.
On the allegation of abandonment of communities in Sokoto and North-West to bandits, Enenche said the 8 Division of the Nigerian Army and the DHQ-led Operation Hadarin Daji are taking care of the situation.
He stated that some communities and tribes in the North-west have relations in Niger Republic, and consequently, the Nigerian military is collaborating with the Niger Republic forces.