Nigeria Army has spread its dragnets to catch up with persons, who recently impersonated military personnel for purposes of intimidating their opponents in a land matter at Ihite Okija, Ihiala council area of Anambra state.
The Commander, Fourteen Engineering Regiment, Onitsha, Lt. Col P. A Adeke, who disclosed this while addressing parties to a land matter in the area, said under the Nigerian law, no civilian is empowered to use military authority against another civilian.
The Commander spoke against the backdrop of placing fake signposts with the inscription “Military Zone, Keep Off” on a church land at Ihite Okija for the purpose of intimidation.
Lt. Col. Adeke stressed that the Army is a professional body and should not be dragged into land issues asking those involved to go to the Police or Court.
He regretted that four sons of the community, who were said to have brought persons claiming to be soldiers to harass and intimate people working on a church land in the community, have failed to honour their invitation, so far.
While describing impersonation as a serious offence, Lt. Col. Adeke vowed that the Army must fish out the impersonators.
The spokesman of Ihite-Okija, Chief Gregory Nwabugwu said they are peace loving and law abiding citizens, adding that the four persons mentioned in connection with the impersonation are from the community and promised that they would address the issue.
Speaking to newsmen, Project Coordinator, Anglican Diocesan Land at Ihite-Okija, Honorable Humphrey Nsofor, said that the over twenty hectares of land was bought from the community by Nnewi Diocese in 1978 and has been approved for Agricultural Institute.
He narrated the negative activities of the four persons from the community to include encroachment on church land, blockade of access road and intimidating workers, pointing out that the church does not have problem with the families that sold the land to it.
Lt Col. Adeke in the company of the villagers inspected the land where he directed his orderly to dismantle the fake military signposts as well as remove the blockade on the access road.