…Capt. Hashim Abdullahi
- NAVY CHIEF, IGP PETITIONED OVER INVASION, CLOSURE OF MARITIME ACADEMY
The management of Merchant Seaman Academy in Essien Udim Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State has petitioned the Chief of Naval Staff, Rear Adm. Ibok-Ete Ibas, over the closure of the school by operatives of the Nigerian Navy. The petition, which underscored a lingering face-off between the Nigerian Navy, NNS Jubilee, Ikot Abasi, and the academy, was signed on behalf of the academy’s proprietor, Mr. Adams Pius, by his lawyer, Barrister Jiti Ogunye of Jiti Ogunye law Chambers, Lagos. It was also copied the Inspector General of Police Ibrahim Idris. Pius demanded immediate re-opening of the school. Pius, in the petition, complained of the violation of his fundamental human rights and threatened to take the Nigerian Navy to court and demand damages; should the authorities refuse to yield to the demand of his client. The academy located in Uwa West, Essien Udim local government area of Akwa Ibom was closed on February 9, 2017 by officers of the Nigerian Navy, NNS Jubilee, alleging that the school was a mushroom institution claiming to train manpower for the maritime sector. The petition alleged the proprietor and his wife were arrested and detained from Feb. 9, 2017 to Feb. 14, 2017 with the complicity of the officers of the Nigeria Police Force.
- ARMY PANEL CLEARS SOLDIERS OF ‘EXTRAJUDICIAL KILLING’ OF IPOB, BOKO HARAM MEMBERS
A special board set up by the Nigerian army says its troops are not guilty of accusations of extrajudicial killing of members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and Boko Haram insurgent group. The army on Wednesday made public the findings of the board it had set up to investigate alleged human rights abuse levelled against its personnel by Amnesty International (AI). AI had accused the army of “human rights abuse, excessive use of force and extra-judicial killing of terrorists in the north-east and members of IPOB in the south-east”. But at a press conference in Abuja, Nuhu Angbazo, the chief of military/civil affairs, while presenting the findings, said the army was not guilty of the accusations. The board however noted that members of the Boko Haram sect, for instance, were not allowed access to legal representation. It also noted that “the right to counsel is fundamental to basic fairness that should be recognised even with respect to terrorism cases”. “The board found that the process determining the legal status of Boko Haram detainees in all military detention facilities appear to have been left to the Nigerian army alone,” it said. “We note in particular the difficulty encountered by the Nigerian Army in transferring detainees in Giwa Barracks in Maiduguri detention facility to the Maiduguri maximum prisons to ease congestion in the facility.
- NIGERIA NAVY TO COMMENCE RECRUITMENT EXERCISE JULY 1
The Nigerian Navy says it would commence online registration for the 2017 Recruitment Exercise on 1 July 2017. A statement signed by its Acting Director of Information, Navy Captain Suleman Dahun, said the registration exercise would close on 31 July 2017. According to the statement interested applicants are advised to apply online at www.joinnigeriannavy.com. Application is free of charge. “Furthermore, additional information is available at www.navy.mil.ng while the support line on working days from 9am – 4pm is 08159999011,” the statement added.
- PROACTIVE BUDGETING ENHANCES SECURITY OPERATIONS
The Commander Army Headquarters Garrison, Major General John Malu has said proactive budgeting for financial implication has enhanced security operations of the Nigeria Army. He spoke on Monday in Abuja during the Army Headquarters Garrison Finance/ Guards Brigade Finance Corps training week. He said the Finance Corps of the Army, must be applauded over, “Proactively budgeting for the financial implication, securing timely release and efficient application of the funds for the optimization of the Nigerian Army operations.” He also said this year’s training week for the lower cadres of soldiers of the Army Finance Corps would focus on the contemporary financial policies which include the Treasury Single Account (TSA) and Integrated Personnel Pay System (IPPS). He noted that the TSA and IPPS are measures instituted by the Federal Government aimed at enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of public financial management. He added that, “These measures were introduced into the Nigerian Army for proper accountability.”
- DEFENCE MINISTER WARNS MILITARY AGAINST DISLOYALTY TO NIGERIAN GOVERNMENT
Nigeria’s Minister of Defence has sent out strong words to the Nigerian Military against insubordination to constituted authority, adding that issues of indiscipline will be viewed seriously in order to maintain professionalism in the military. Retired Brigadier General Mansur Dan -Ali was speaking at the official opening ceremony of Nigerian Army’s premier institution, the Army War College Nigeria in Abuja, the nation’s capital. While he called for loyalty, obedience and subordination from all personnel, he advocated for support to democratic tenets at all times. He said the government would not ignore its responsibility in the provision of all necessary equipment, training and welfare. He said the Colleges by the 3 Services of the Armed Forces underscores the importance that the present administration places on the improvement and development of professional military education, stressing that only through continuous training that the Armed Forces of Nigeria can effectively discharge its constitutional mandate. While lauding the military on its professionalism, training and leadership, which he said has led to the degrading of the Boko Haram group, the Minister maintains that the Army must as a matter of necessity continue to build intellectual capacity through education to sustain the feat.
- DICON, NEXTER TO PARTNER ON MILITARY HARDWARE
Defence Industries Corporation of Nigeria (DICON) is to partner with NEXTER Group of France, a francophone company into production of military hardware, to produce hardware to meet the Defence need of the Armed Forces of Nigeria and other security agencies. This was the outcome of the visit of Chief Executive Officer, PROFORCE Limited, a private company into the production of defence products in Nigeria, Engr. Ade Ogundeyin who led NEXTER Group of France on facility visit to the Defence Industries Corporation of Nigeria (DICON), Kaduna. In his remark, the Director General of DICON, Maj.-Gen. Bamidele Ogunkale, said there was no way the Corporation could attain its goals of meeting the ordnance needs of the Armed Forces and other security agencies without going into collaboration with other Defence related companies, either locally or internationally, especially in this era of economic downturn facing the nation. The DG said, as soon as he assumed office, he made collaboration with industries, companies and academic institutions that could be of mutual benefit to DICON a priority. He stressed that he traveled extensively to visit top players in the above industries and institutions and this has started yielding dividends. “It was during such visits that PROFORCE was spotted and the Corporation’s partnership with Proforce has brought about many changes today, with PROFORCE leading the NEXTER Group to DICON, being its international partner,” he said.
- TROOPS ARREST BOKO HARAM TERRORIST ALIKO IN BAUCHI
Troops of 33 Brigade of Nigeria Army, yesterday, arrested suspected Boko Haram terrorist, Aliyu Ahmed, alias Aliko; in Bauchi State, while their counterparts of Bravo Company, 120 Battalion intercepted four child traffickers and 19 underage children in Yobe. In a statement, Army Spokesman, Brig-Gen. Sani Usman, disclosed that Aliko was arrested following a tip-off in Yuga village in Toro Local council of Bauchi State where he has been hiding, noting that he was found in possession of one single barrel gun and one Dane gun. “During preliminary interrogation, the suspect confessed that he actively participated in several Boko Haram terrorists attacks and also owned an AK-47 Rifle, which got lost during one of the attacks they carried out in 2016,” Usman said. He added that the four traffickers were arrested at Katarko, while conveying the 19 children from Potiskum to Garin Tuwo, Bungai and Buni Yadi in Gujba Local council of Yobe and Galarabala in Biu Local council of Borno State. “Both the suspected traffickers and their victims have been moved to the Brigade Headquarters for transfer to National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons,” the army spokesman stated.
- US HASN’T WITHDRAWN FROM SALE OF AIRCRAFT TO FG – NAF
The Nigerian Air Force has said Nigeria is hopeful to get the aircraft purchased from the United States of America, as the NAF has not yet received any contrary notice. The NAF Director of Public Relations and Information, Air Commodore Olatokunbo Adesanya, said this in an exclusive interview with our correspondent, while reacting to the call by two US senators, Cory Booker and Rand Paul, to stop the sale of the aircraft to Nigeria. The two senators had reportedly, in a letter dated June 8, and addressed to Rex Tillerson, US Secretary of State, expressed concern that the sale would “spur unrest and violence, particularly in the North-East, unless Nigeria indicated more commitment to the protection of human rights. Adesanya, however, said US and Nigeria were great allies, and there was no contrary element in the deal. He said, “What the report said was that the two senators wrote to stop the sale of the aircrafts. But the way the American system works is that they cannot stop the sale, they can only write to stop. The senators gave their reasons why they think the American government should not sell to us. Up till now, the American government has not informed us officially that they are not selling. We are very hopeful. The Nigerian Air Force sees the US as an ally. “Presently, we are expecting two more Mi-35M fighter helicopters from Russia and 10 more Super Mushshak from Pakistan. The processes are ongoing. You should note that aircrafts are not taken off the shelf. You make a request and they then start building. On the report of the Rann accidental bombing, Adesanya noted that the report was being studied at the Defence Headquarters, and would be made public at the appropriate time.
- 38 COMPULSORILY RETIRED ARMY OFFICERS SEEK BUHARI’S INTERVENTION
President Muhammadu Buhari has been urged to constitute an impartial panel to review the cases of the 38 serving military officers compulsorily retired by the Army High Command for their alleged partisanship in the 2015 general election as well as involvement in defence contracts scam on the grounds that some of them were not only unfairly treated but that the exercise failed to follow due process. In an article titled: ‘Injustice, Human Rights and the Nigeria Army,’ signed by Ishaq Yusuf, a public affairs commentator, he described the reasons given for their compulsory retirement as untenable because the retirement had nothing to do with the so-called ‘service exigency’ and clearly contravened the Armed Forces Act (AFA), CAP A20 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004 on which their compulsory retirement was grounded. Citing instances where the AFA was contravened, Yusuf pointed out that in the AFA, “all military officers are entitled to appear before a court martial to ascertain their guilt or otherwise when accused or alleged to have committed an offence. However, he said in the instant case, as a clear abuse of the rules, no court martial was convened in respect of these officers. “Investigation shows that nine officers that is; Maj. Gen. M.Y Ibrahim, Maj. Gen. S.D Aliyu, Maj. Gen. F.O Alli, Maj. Gen. L.I Wiwa, Maj. Gen. E.L Atewe, Brig. Gen. Mormoni-Bashir, Brig. Gen. D.M Onoyiveta, Brig. Gen A.L Onibasa and Brig. Gen D Abdusalam appeared before the arms contract panel. “While another 11, Brig. Gen A.S.H Saad, Brig. Gen Koko Essien, Col F.D Kayode, Col D.R Hassan, Col. T.T Minimah, Lt. Col T.O Oladuntoye, Lt. Col. C.O Amadi, Lt. Col O.A Baba-Ochankpa (late), Lt. Col Egemole, Lt. Col. K.O Adimoha and Lt. Col A.S Mohamed attended the Maj. Gen. Oyebade then GOC 1 Division‘s Board of Inquiry on Election Partisanship as witnesses,” they stated. Pointing out his strong conviction that the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai, had a hidden agenda in ensuring that the 38 officers were booted out of the service, Yusuf stressed that in some instances, some of the compulsorily retired officers were out of the country at the time some of the infringements were allegedly committed, while others had neither been queried nor ever received any summons before a civil or military tribunal or inquiry. According to him, “there were 18 officers, who were never queried, charged or appeared for investigation. They include Maj. Gen. Ijioma, Maj. Gen. Ejemai, Maj. Gen Ilo, Maj. Gen. Ude, Brig. Gen. Aghachi, Brig. Gen Fibuonuma, Brig. Gen L.M Bello, Brig Gen. I.M Lawson, Col F.E Ekpeyong, Col. O.U Nwankwo, Col. M.A Suileman, Col. C.K Ukoha, Lt. Col A Mohammed, Lt. Col G.C Nyekwu, Lt. Col D.B Dazang, Lt. Col T.E Arigbe, Lt. Col Enemchukwu and Maj. Williams.
- FIRE GUTS GENERAL OLADIPO DIYA’S HOUSE, ON-SITE GUARDS HARASS JOURNALISTS
The residence of Lt. General Oladipo Diya, a retired military general who was the deputy to late Nigerian maximum dictator, General Sanni Abacha situated at 31 Adekunle Fajuyi Way in Ikeja GRA, Lagos was gutted by fire on Saturday 2017. But, in what seem like an attempt to shield the incident away from the public, entrances into the street were blocked and guarded by heavily armed military men. Reporters who managed to find their way to the scene were prevented from taking pictures, neither were they allowed to ask questions. A female reporter who was suspected to have taken pictures was harassed by military guards and forced to delete every picture on her phone. A lady, presumed to be a member of the Diya’s family had approached the reporter to question what she was doing at the scene and who had sent her. However, officials of the Lagos State Fire Service and Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA) who were on ground to put off the fire refused to respond to question as to the cause of the inferno.