12 August, 2017
A statement issued by Major General John Enenche, Director Defence Information said, "The Defence Headquarters wishes to clarify the news through some media outlets that troops of Operation LAFIA DOLE invaded United Nations house in Maiduguri, which is not true".
The reports had also claimed that the army may have taken the action on suspicions that a highly placed infleuntial criminal, and member of the terrorist sect may be living in the house which belonged to late former Governor of the state, Malla Kachallah, before it was rented out for United Nations use.
The rumour was later dismissed as UN's Humanitarian Coordinator, Edward Kallon, called the raid unauthorized.
"But the United Nations officials denied them access insisting that it was against their policy to allow armed soldiers invade their offices or buildings, especially at such odd hours of the night".
As part of the ongoing counter-insurgency operations in the northeast, the Nigerian Army said it conducted cordon and search operation at a building, following an alert that some high profile Boko Haram members were living there. "Having consulted the ASC, all United Nations staff in Maiduguri are to work from home today and expect updates".
"The soldiers later withdrew from the area at about 7.45 a.m.", the source said.
Humanitarian Coordinator in Nigeria, Edward Kallon, yesterday expressed "grave concern" over "unauthorized search" by security forces on a United Nations base for humanitarian workers in Maiduguri, the Borno State capital.
"On the whole, operation in the general area was successfully concluded but no arrest was made because the suspects were not found".
The spokesperson further stated that troops under the Operation LAFIYA DOLE had been conducting several clearance as well as cordon and search operations in urban and rural areas within the Theatre.
According to the Army, the clearance operations have been yielding successes. "I am extremely concerned that these actions could be detrimental to the critical work that is being carried out every day to support the most vulnerable in the region and I call upon the Government of Nigeria to provide clarification", he added.
"At about 2am early this morning, Nigeria army troops in trucks are conducting cordon and search on United Nations red roof humanitarian camp and forced their way into the property", the United Nations said in an advisory note to staff. This necessitated the need to intensify cordon and search in the Maiduguri metropolis and environment.
He warned against peddling of rumours that could cause disaffection among the various ethnic and religious groups of people in the state.
The militant group has killed an estimated 20,000 people overall, and the violence has forced more than 2 million Nigerians from their homes.
More than $650 million has been given by the global community to the response this year, though agencies say more is needed to keep the crisis from worsening.