The Nigerian military on Monday said that no soldier was killed in the attack on the Joint Task Force, JTF, in Nembe Jetty in Bayelsa State as widely reported in the media.
Several newspapers, including the icirnigeria.org, reported over the weekend that four soldiers and a policeman were killed in the attack by sea pirates on Friday.
However, the director, Defence Information, Rabe Abubakar, a Colonel, told reporters that the figure was false adding that the military did not suffer any casualty in the incident.
He said that six persons had been arrested in connection with the crime adding that they were currently being interrogated by security operatives.
Abubakar also noted that to forestall similar attacks in the future, intensive condone and search exercises were ongoing in the Nembe region.
Contrary to the military’s position, however, the Bayelsa State police command had confirmed that four soldiers and a policeman were killed in the attack on the military formation.
Spokesman to the Bayelsa Police Command, Asinim Butswat, who confirmed the incident in a statement, clearly stated that four soldiers and a policeman were killed.
“On the 7 August, 2015, at about 11:30pm, four speedboats loaded with unknown gunmen, suspected to be sea pirates attacked the Joint Task Force (JTF) Base, at Nembe Water front, in Nembe LGA. They killed four soldiers and one policeman. The gunmen carted away two HP guns and other arms from the Base. A combined team of the JTF, Marine Police and the Navy are combing the creeks to recover the arms and arrest the culprits,” Butswat said.
The attack was also confirmed by the media coordinator of the JTF in the Niger Delta, Isa Ado, a Lieutenant Colonel, although he could not confirm the casualty figures.
Also, the Bayelsa government on Sunday condoled with the Chief of Army Staff. Maj.- Gen. Tukur Buratai and the families of the five security officers believed to have been killed in the Nembe attack.
In statement signed by Daniel Iworiso-Markson, spokesman to governor Seriake Dickson, the government assured the families of the slain officers that they did not die in vain.
Iworiso-Markson said that a letter personally signed by Governor Dickson had been dispatched to the Chief of Army Staff to express the heartfelt condolences of the government and people of the state.