— Gumi calls for international inquiry
By Samuel Aruwan
Renown Kaduna-based cleric, Dr. Ahmad Abubakar Mahmud Gumi, last night posted on his Facebook page four shocking photographs purporting to show how Nigerian soldiers executed unarmed civilians and buried them in a mass grave in Borno state.
He described the act as a genocide that must be investigated.
The civilians were most probably rounded up as suspects in the ongoing security crackdown on Boko Haram insurgents.
In the first photograph, a soldier is seen standing guard as poorly dressed civilians – many of them in their teens – line up in an open field indicating a Savannah environment. A waiting white van can be seen in front of them.
None of the civilians has a shoe or slippers on.
The second picture shows the civilians lying flat on their stomachs, all dead.
A third photograph shows a wider perspective of the executed men just as a small group of young men dig a mass grave beside the corpses.
The fourth picture shows the group of grave-diggers pouring the grotesque-looking corpses of the executed men into the mass grave from the back of the white van. A few soldiers can be seen in the background, with some sitting in a military van.
Gumi accompanied the photographs with a terse statement titled “Genocide Committed in Borno.”
He started the statement by quoting a United States government official, saying: “The acting Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs, Robert Jackson said: ‘When soldiers destroy towns, kill civilians and detain innocent people with impunity, mistrust takes root’.”
Gumi wrote: “This crime must not go unpunished. The international community should institute an inquiry and forensics search of other mass graves and bring to those culpable to book.
“Please, let us control our emotions and pray to Allah to expose all the criminals among us. So many innocent people have suffered. Enough is enough.
“May Allah save us all. Amin.”
The outspoken cleric did not, however, mention when the alleged mass executions took place or give further details.
Efforts to contact him by our correspondent last night failed as he did not answer a call put to his telephone.
Gumi has often promoted the notion that the Boko Haram insurgency is a plotby the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) to destablise Nigeria.
A recent instance was a Facebook post he made on Tuesday this week in which he linked a 32:29-minute YouTube video of a 40-year-old American radio host, author, conspiracy theorist and documentary filmmaker, Alex Jones, titled “Obama’s CIA Runs Boko Haram”.
It is said that in the video Jones “breaks down how Boko Haram is run by the CIA, how it’s used to destabilize the surrounding region and give foreign governments an excuse to intervene and seize valuable assets.”
The title of Gumi’s response to the YouTube post can be translated from Hausa language as “nothing happens without a purpose”.
Blueprint tried to reach the Director of Defence Information, Major-Gen Chris Olukolade, for an official comment on the alleged killings, all to no avail.