Fact-Check: Did Nigerian Troops Encounter Mysterious Beast with Human Body in Benue?
A post on Social Media, especially on Facebook claimed that a Mysterious Beast with the head of a canine and body of a human, which had maimed four residents including a Nigerian Airforce Personnel, was neutralized by troops of Operation Whirlstroke, in Benue State.
There is neither “Office of Public Media” in the Defence Headquarters (DHQ) nor at the Directorate of Defence Information (DDI). The touted video is from an original Portuguese film “Lobisomem Morto a Tiros.” Even the signatory’s name and rank are incorrect!
A Press Release purportedly from the office of the ‘Director of Public Media, Defence Headquarters’ claims that a Mysterious Beast with the head of a canine and body of a human, has maimed 4 residence including a Nigerian Airforce Personnel in Benue State but was eventually neutralized by troops of Operation Whirlstroke.
The purported press release reads as follows:
MYSTERIOUS BEAST KILLED BY TROOPS OF OPERATION WHIRL STROKE IN BENUE STATE
A mysterious beast with the head of a canine and the body of a human was killed during a ferocious encounter yesternight in Benue. Troops of Operation Whirlstoke got a tip off from the locales of Tembele village in Benue State and quickly went on hot pursuit of the beast. On sighting the beast, the troops in their usual manner of swiftness and uncommon dexterity, immediately neutralized it with precision firepower.
Unfortunately, after interview with some eyewitnesses in the village, it was reported that the beast had already maimed 4 residents. Medical personnel of the Nigerian Air Force Hospital was able to quickly respond and the remains of the deceased had since been deposited at the Air Force Base hospital morgue.
The general public is hereby enjoined to maintain good security awareness and immediately report any encounter to the nearest security station. The Chief of Defence Staff is therefore using this medium to once again assure all citizens of the C-in-C’s resolve to ensure the absolute safety of all citizens and their livelihoods.
Director of Public Media
The purported release is already being shared by unsuspecting Nigerians on various social media platforms including Facebook and WhatsApp groups.
A general keyword search on various search on various search engines by PRNigeria reveals that there is no such office as the “Office of Public Media” in the Defence Headquarters’ as indicated in the fake release.
PRNigeria also double-checked with Communication Officers at the Defence Headquarters’ and it was gathered that a similar name of an Officer in the Department of Defence Information (DDI), who is in Public Relations is not spelt as ‘Maigaida’ but ‘Maigida’ and the only officer’s name is Air Commodore WM Maigida of the Department of Defence Information which indicates that even the mentioned rank is misleading as he is not an AVM.
PRNigeria also subjected the touted video that accompanied the press release to forensic Investigation, and it further reveals that it was doctored as the original video was from a Portuguese film “Lobisomem Morto a Tiros.”
Additionally, PRNigeria can verify that the supposed press release did not come with a date which is an unconventional practice in press release and distribution.
Further search engine checks did not relate any news item to any credible media Organization suggesting or alleging that an officer of the Nigerian Airforce along with some locals in Benue State was attacked by any beast.
The claim that a mysterious beast with a canine head and human body surfaced in Benue State but has been neutralized by troops, is false and misleading and should therefore be disregarded by the general public.