Nigerian Army has released 189 Boko Haram suspects who have been found to be innocent after investigations.
The detainees have been held for months, including breastfeeding mothers with their babies clinging to their skirts.
They were freed by the Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Kenneth Minimah, who said the suspects “have been investigated and found to be free of all suspected incriminations.”
The detainees were handed over to Borno State Governor, Kashim Shettima to be reunited with their families.
Some of the freed women said they are widows. Others said they were arrested because their brothers were suspected Boko Haram members.
President Muhammadu Buhari’s government says it’s investigating an Amnesty International report which last month accused the military of killing 8,000 detainees.
Gen. Minimah had earlier told Governor Shettima that the military’s gesture was part of activities to mark this year’s Nigerian Army Day Celebration, NADCEL.
The Army chief disclosed that the choice to observe this year’s NADCEL ‎in the war-torn Maiduguri was to boost the morale of the troops who are fighting the Boko Haram insurgency.
According to him, it was logical to have a low-keyed celebration since the Military Command and Control Centre, MCCC, have been relocated to Maiduguri.
Governor Shettima paid tribute to the Nigerian Army for all the supports it had been given the state in the war against Boko Haram sect, even as he thanked the Army for bringing this year’s NADCEL to Maiduguri.
The Army boss also visited the Shehu of Borno, Alhaji Abubakar ‎Garbai Ibn Umar Elkanemi.
Receiving Minimah and his entourage the royal father said Borno used to be a peaceful state, wondering why violence and religious extremism have now become the order of the day.
El-Kanemi reminded Minimah of the peaceful history of the people of Borno state and how over the year outsiders of first and second generation immigrants had come to introduce alien culture of violence and religious extremism to his domain.

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