Real reason we reopened Banex plaza: Nigeria Army

The Army said it agreed to reopen Banex Plaza in Abuja after achieving crucial agreements with stakeholders.

Maj.-Gen Onyema Nwachukwu, the army’s spokeswoman, announced this in a statement released Monday.

The plaza was shut down on Saturday, May 18, following a physical altercation between some traders and soldiers over phone sales.

But Gen. Nwachukwu said in response to incident, a high-level meeting was convened in the Office of the National Security Adviser including the Principal General Staff Officer to the NSA, Commissioner of Police FCT, the FCT Director of the Department of State Services, the Leadership and Management of Banex Plaza, a Representative from the Directorate of Abuja Environmental Protection Board, and the National Chairman of the Mobile Phone Traders Association, with the primary objective “to identify and apprehend the perpetrators and ensure the continued security of the Federal Capital Territory.

“Following resolutions were agreed upon: immediate reopening of Banex Plaza, immediate closure of chop C93, arrest owners of the shop those who orchestrated the mob attack on the soldier and handed over to the Nigerian Police, market leaders are to remain vigilant and report any remaining perpetrators to the authorities.”

He said two soldiers arrested in connection to the incident have been arrested and handed over to the headquarters of the Nigerian Army Corps of Military Police for further action.

Nwachukwu said the army would “thoroughly” investigate the circumstances surrounding the presence of its personnel at the plaza and the subsequent attack.

He said: “It must be reiterated that acts of violence against military personnel are not only condemnable but also pose a significant threat to national security and public order.”

The army spokesperson urged the public to exercise caution and restraint when interacting with military personnel and other security operatives, “especially when they are in uniform.”

“There are established channels for reporting grievances or misconduct by personnel to the appropriate authorities. It is imperative that these channels are utilized to maintain order and respect for those who serve and protect our nation,” he added.

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