Army Sets Panel to Investigate Officers’ Involvement in Elections
The Nigerian Army has inaugurated a five-man committee of inquiry to investigate some officers’ conduct and involvement in the 2014/2015 gubernatorial and general elections in the country.
It was alleged that some officers were involved in partisan politics in the governorship elections conducted in states like Ekiti, Osun, Rivers, Akwa-Ibom in 2014, and the general elections in 2015.
The General Officer Commanding (GOC) 1 Division of the Nigerian Army, Kaduna, and chairman of the committee, Major-General Adeniyi Oyebade, disclosed this at a media briefing in Kaduna while announcing the committee members.
He said, “It is therefore based on all these weighty allegations that the Chief of Army Staff, Lt-Gen. Tukur Yusuf Buratai on assumption of command, having articulated his vision of putting in place a professionally responsive Nigerian Army in the discharge of its constitutional roles, instituted this Board of Inquiry.”
He explained that commencement of the probe has begun and sittings will be holding at the 1 Division headquarters in Kaduna. He called on individuals with substantiated evidence to tender any petition to the panel to make out conclusions.
Oyebade noted that, “I will like to call on all the strata in the society and, of course, the general public, to please as a matter of urgency appear in person if they so wish and forward their petitions in form of memorandum either personally to Headquarters 1 Division Nigerian Army, Kawo, Kaduna or through e-mail on firstname.lastname@example.org, or via courier addressed to the secretary, panel of investigation on elections, HQ 1Division, Kawo, Kaduna, which is to be submitted not later than Friday 20th November, 2015.”
The panel is to investigate these allegations and recommend appropriate measures to prevent future reoccurrence, with reports to be submitted within the next two weeks to the Chief of Army Staff Lt-GenTukur Buratai.
“The military as a noble profession of arms must remain apolitical in our democratic dispensation. Politics, we strongly believe, should be left entirely to the politicians.
“I must hasten to add however, that in spite of these worrisome allegations, the military has to a large extent performed creditably as the foremost guardian of the nation’s democracy.”
Members of the group include Col. Danladi Salihu as the panel secretary; other members of the panel are: Brig-Gen Emmanuel Kabuk, Brig-Gen Sunday Araoye, and Brig-Gen Baba Ibrahim.