524 Dismissed Soldiers Plead For Mercy

Akamanu Jennifer

Five hundred and twenty-four soldiers who were dismissed from the Nigerian Army are pleading with the military authorities to “tamper justice with mercy”.

Emmanuel Ogbole, chief commissioner, public complaints commission (PCC) made the disclosure on Tuesday when he visited Tukur Buratai , chief of army staff, to submit the case files of the ex-soldiers.

Ogbole said the affected soldiers had earlier visited the commission and pleaded with it to intervene on their behalf.

“In summary, we are not here to take any decision on the issue, we are here to transmit their complaints which were recorded and documented,” he said.

“This is enable you look into them and take the appropriate action in the best interest of the Nigerian army and the nation at large.”

Responding, Buratai said the cases would be studied in their “individual merits”.

“The complaints of 524 ex-soldiers which you presented to me are going to be studied, we will look at each case on its merit,” he said.

“I assure you that they are going to be resolved in the best interest of the Nigerian army and in the best interest of our country.

“We know that 524 soldiers is almost a battalion and we will definitely feel the impact of these guys.

“Notwithstanding, we will still look at their cases critically based on their merits in the interest of our service and the country.”

In 2014, the army dismissed 5,000 soldiers for various offences, including alleged refusal to fight members of the Boko Haram sect in the north-east.

However, 3,032 were pardoned after their cases were reviewed by a military panel led by Adeniyi Oyebade, general officer commanding (GOC), 1 Division.

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