One foreign freelance journalists based in Nigeria, Anna Cunningham, and AFP’s Abuja bureau chief, Phil Hazlewood, have both dismissed Femi Adesina’s claims that the military does not or rarely disclose the figure of its casualties globally.

Adesina, the spokesperson of Nigeria’s president, Muhammadu Buhari, made the statement on Channels Television.

Cunningham and Hazlewood debunked the presidential aide’s claim after Channels Television tweeted the words of Adesina.

Both journalists went on to tweet links of where British, American, Canadian and Australian military publish the names of their fallen heroes.

Cunningham also responded to a follower who said the links she provided are memorial/archive lists not names of those published as they become casualty on war front.

She tweeted,

Adesina, a former managing director of Nigeria’s Daily Sun newspaper, appeared on the TV station as mounting criticisms trail the silence of his boss, after the reported killings of almost 100 Nigerian soldiers in Borno state.

The Nigerian Army on Friday, November 23, five days after the attack, released a statement admitting the latest attack but kept mum on the official casualty figure. The Nigerian military has always maintained silence when it’s soldiers are at the receiving end of terrorist attacks.

Security sources say the military considers it a psychological boost for terrorists when it confirms or reacts to such incidents. However, the recent attack in Melete, Borno state is seen as many as a major disaster for the Nigerian army and by extension the Nigerian government.

Former aviation minister, Femi Fani-Kayode was more pointed. Disagreeing with the presidency he remarked,

Since coming into office in 2015, Nigeria’s current government has maintained the narrative that Boko Haram insurgency has been defeated or that it is winning the war. But the death merchants have refused to go away, and the region and the country is locked in an endless bloody orgy, the root, purpose and impetus of which only very select few Nigerians know.

Perhaps embarrassed that its narrative had been punctured by neutral from foreign journalists, Anna Cunningham suggests it discovered that Channels TV – an independent media house = had doctored the Femi Adesina interview on its YouTube website to edit out the contested narrative.

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