Army Begins Court Martial of General, 21 Army Officers in Lagos
The authority of the Nigerian Army, Monday, begun the court martialing of 22 top Army officers including a Brigadier General, ostensibly over the alleged sabotage role they played in the on-going war against Boko Haram terrorists.
This according to a top Military source is taking place in the Ikeja Military Cantonment in Lagos.
The officers include a Brigadier-General – J.O Komolafe; 14 Colonels – A. Laguda, V. Ebhaleme, V.O. Ita, and I.B. Maina, I. A Aboi, I.M Kabir, M.H. Abubakar, A. A. Egbejule, N. N. Orok, C. A. Magaji, A.O. Agwu, A.J.S. Gulani, O.O. Obolo and A.M. Adetuyi; one Major – M.M Idris; five Captains – M. Adamu, O. A. Adenaike, M. Gidado, M.M. Clark and S. Raymond and one Second Lieutenant – S.O Olowa.
The lawyer representing some of the officers, Femi Falana, whom our Correspondent ran into on his way to the venue of the trial, said the army authorities have not told him the charges preferred against the accused officers.
“The Army has not told me what their offences are yet, so I cannot tell you anything now, other than say that I am on my way to the venue of the trial.”
It is however believed the officers are being prosecuted for alleged offences committed during the on-going war against Boko Haram insurgents in the North East of the Country.
This is the first time senior army officers would be put on trial for offences related to the military’s campaign in the North East.
Those affected by a gale of court-martialling that swept through the Army since 2014, were mostly non-commissioned personnel, many of whom were either dismissed or sentenced to death.
In December last year, 54 soldiers were sentenced to death for conspiracy to commit mutiny. The Army said the soldiers disobeyed a direct order from their superior officers to take part in an operation.
The soldiers however said they only asked for support equipment before embarking on the operation.
Twelve other soldiers had been previously sentenced to death by firing squad for shooting at a car conveying their commanding officer, Ahmed Mohammed, a Major General.
The soldiers revolted after some of their colleagues were ambushed and killed by Boko Haram extremists, an attack they blamed on their superior officer.
When our Correspondent contacted the Director of Army Information, Brig. Gen. Olajide Ladeye, for confirmation, his telephone lines where switched off.
Meanwhile, when our Correspondent made effort to visit the Ikeja Cantonment venue of the trial on Monday, the presence of heavy security manned by gun-wielding soldiers easily suggest that a very high calibre Military assignment may be taking place within the barrack.