The Nigerian military has suspended the activities of the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) after levelling accusations of sabotage against the agency in the fight against Boko Haram.
The military claims some members of UNICEF staff have been allegedly spying for the terrorist group.
This was confirmed in a statement on Friday where the military said UNICEF had held workshops in the northeast city of Maiduguri on December 12 and 13 training people for “clandestine” activities that are “sabotaging” counter-terrorism operations conducted by the army against the terror group.
“There is credible information that some of them are indulging in unwholesome practices that could further jeopardize the fight against terrorism and insurgency, as they train and deploy spies who support the insurgents and their sympathizers,” said the press release signed by Colonel Onyema Nwachukwu.
“Consequently, the Theatre Command Operation LAFIYA DOLE is suspending the operations of UNICEF in the North East theatre until further notice,” he added.
Nwachukwu continued saying the agency had “abdicated its primary duty of catering for the wellbeing of children and the vulnerable … and now engaged in training selected persons for clandestine activities to continue sabotaging the counterterrorism and counterinsurgency efforts of troops through spurious and unconfirmed allegations … on alleged violations of human rights by the military.”
The UNICEF is yet to respond to these allegations.