.We only invited him to help us with valuable information.
The Defence Headquarters (DHQ) yesterday, said it did not order the arrest of Commodore Kunle Olawunmi(rtd) over his recent interview on Channels Television.
The military authorities denied the order and blasted Sahara Reporters, an online news platform, for publishing a story, alleging that ‘the Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA) ordered the arrest of retired military officer.
Director Defence Information, Major Gen. Benjamin Sawyerr, gave the clarification, in a widely-circulated press release.
It would be recalled that the retired military officer, who spoke following the recent attack on the Nigerian Defense Academy, blamed religion and culture for the increasing spate of insecurity in the country.
The statement reads: ‘The attention of the Defence Headquarters (DHQ) has been drawn to an online news publication by Sahara Reporters alleging that the Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA) ordered the arrest of retired Cdre Kunle Olawunmi for recently appearing on Channels Television programme (Sunrise Daily).’
‘The Armed Forces may not want to join issues with Sahara Reporters for the scandalous and malicious publication insinuating that it’s Agency has ordered the arrest of Cdre Olawunmi (rtd) for sharing his views on matters of defence and national security.’
‘It is gratifying to state that the retired military officer who is on the military reserve list was only invited via SMS and voice by DIA to further furnish the AFN with relevant and pressing security information which he may be opportuned to know of as a Professor of Global Security Studies.’
‘The said proposed meeting between DIA and the retired senior Navy officer was intended to get credible tips on boosting the fight against terrorism/insurgency, banditry and sundry crimes. He was not asked to come along with his international passport. This in no way constitutes any form of arrest speculated by Sahara Reporters.’
‘It is very sad that an online media like Sahara Reporters would capitalize on a proposed meeting between an agency and it’s stakeholder to paint the story in a manner intended to portray the military as draconic government agency acting in a crude manner.’
‘The general public should please note that the AFN is a professional entity that will continue to be responsive to all credible information that will promote peace and unity of our dear country.’
‘As you will recall, the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), General Lucky Irabor has just completed his tour of the 6 Geo-Political Zones, where he interacted with retired military officers with a view to rallying them to lend their support to the Armed Forces of Nigeria.’
‘In this regard, I wish to use this medium to encourage the retired senior officer to come forward to give valuable information to the military authorities as a patriotic citizen who has served meritoriously in various capacities in the Nigerian Navy before retirement.’