By Mukwuzi Joseph
farmers shouldn’t have gone to the farms without military clearance.
The Presidency has blamed the 43 rice farmers killed in Borno over the weekend for not getting military clearance before going to their farms.
Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, told BBC on Monday that the farmers should have waited for military clearance before proceeding to the farms.
Garba Shehu said the government was sad about the tragic incident, but added that the “people need to understand what it is like in the Lake Chad Basin area.”
He insisted that much of the area has been liberated from Boko Haram terrorists but said there are still some areas that have not been cleared for the return of villagers who have been displaced.
He continued: “The truth has to be said. Was there any military clearance from the military who are in total control of the area?
“Did anybody ask to resume activity?”
Mr. Shehu said he had been briefed by military authorities that the villagers did not seek military advice before exposing themselves to “a window that the terrorists have exploited.”
He added: “So ideally, all of these places ought to probably be allowed to pass through proper military clearance before resettlement or even farmers resuming activities on those fields.”
His statement comes only hours after at least 43 rice farmers were slaughtered by Boko Haram terrorists while they were working on their farms