The Nigerian Army has said it is launching its annual exercise “Crocodile Smile” from October 20 to December 31, to identify, track and “counter negative propaganda” in the social media and across the cyberspace.
This was contained in a statement titled, ‘Nigerian army sets to commence exercise Crocodile Smile VI nationwide’, and signed by Acting Director Army Public Relations, Musa Sagir, on Saturday.
Sagir said the exercise will begin from Tuesday.
“This year’s Exercise CROCODILE SMILE V1 is scheduled to commence from the 20th of October to the 31st of December 2020.
“The Exercise is deliberately intended to be all encompassing to include cyber warfare exercises designed to identify, track and counter negative propaganda in the social media and across the cyberspace.
This is the first ever Cyberwarfare exercise to be conducted in the history of the African Armed Forces. Accordingly, the exercise will also include positive identification component aimed at identifying Boko Haram terrorists fleeing from the North East and other parts of the country as a result of the ongoing operations in the various theatres of operations especially in the Northeast, North Central and North Western parts of Nigeria.
“The Nigerian Army, once again, reassures all well meaning Nigerians of its commitment to the sustenance of peace and security in Nigeria and urges members of the public for their support and understanding throughout the period of the exercise.”
The Crocodile Smile VI is coming amidst nationwide protests against police brutality, extortion, and extrajudicial killings.
Many youths have expressed anger over abuses by the Special Anti-Robbery Squad operatives and have taken to the streets.
The #EndSARS hashtag started on social media after a video showing what looked like a SARS officer attacking a man spread online.
The protest, which started in Lagos and Abuja last week, has spread to many parts of the country, Kaduna being the latest.
On Saturday, thousands of protesters marched against insecurity and banditry in Kaduna.
Musa said the exercise was traditionally scheduled in the last quarter of every year to checkmate all forms of crimes and criminality as the end of the year approaches.