The Presidency has accused former Vice President Atiku Abubakar of blackmailing the military and denigrating the nation’s democracy over his comments on a report of an alleged secret site where fallen soldiers were buried in Borno State without the consent of their family members.
The presidential candidate of the main opposition party, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the February 2019 election, had on Thursday called for the setting up of a Judicial Commission of Inquiry to investigate the reported burial of 1000 fallen Nigerian soldiers in a secret mass grave, as well as another panel of Inquiry to determine the true state of the war against terror in the country.
This followed a story published by the US-based Wall Street Journal (WSJ) alleging the practice.
But in a statement issued in Abuja on Friday by Femi Adesina, Special Adviser to the President (Media and Publicity), the Presidency accused Atiku of using different issues to appeal to the emotions of Nigerians with the hope of capturing power.
The statement maintained that Atiku was fond of using sentiments, “the latest of which is the tendentious story” by Wall Street Journal, alleging that about one thousand Nigerian soldiers had been recently killed by Boko Haram and Islamic State of West Africa terrorists, and secretly buried by Nigerian military authorities.
While noting that the military has duly countered the story, educating the Wall Street Journal on the hollowness of its publication, it observed that the PDP presidential candidate has “quickly weighed in on the matter, as part of his gambit to whip up emotions, and perhaps get the judiciary to reflect the “pulse of the nation” in its judgment.
The statement added: “According to the PDP candidate, who lost the last February poll by nearly four million votes, as released by the electoral umpire, he could not fathom that in the space of a year, scores of great patriots were killed and buried secretly without their families being told.