News as about 12 officers handed over to EFCC
Aliyu Momoh, the Brigadier-General indicted alongside others for unprofessional conduct during the Ekiti and Osun governorship elections in 2014 and the 2015 general elections, has been retired.
Twelve other officers were handed over to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for alleged financial inducement during the elections.
They are three serving Majors-General and one retired, three Brigadiers-General, four colonels and one Lieutenant-Colonel.
Many officers lost their commands for alleged misconduct.
Following a strong commendation, Capt. Sagir Koli, the officer who blew the whistle on the compromise by some officers during Ekiti and Osun polls, has been reabsorbed. He is on a post-graduate course overseas.
The disciplinary measures were ratified by the Army Council.
But the names of those indicted were not disclosed as at press time last night.
A source, who spoke in confidence, said: “The action taken against some officers in the Army was based on their unprofessional conduct while on duty during three elections, namely Ekiti, Osun and the 2015 poll.
“It is not as if any specific election was isolated. The public ought to be properly informed on the scope of investigation and disciplinary measures put in place.
“While some officers went beyond their brief, others became associated with management of funds and a few were partisan.
“The Army Council recommended the retirement of some officers, the loss of commands by another set of officers and the handing over of 12 others to EFCC for investigation.
“The 12 officers handed over to EFCC were in respect of the three elections. After the investigation of the anti-graft agency, they might be arraigned before a Court Martial.”
It was gathered that some officers were in a cantonment in Abuja awaiting trial by a Court Martial.
When contacted, the Acting Director of Army Public Relations, Col. Sani Kukasheka Usman, last night said: “I confirm that Gen. Momoh along with some other officers have been retired.
“A board of Inquiry looked into allegations against some officers during the conduct of the governorship elections in Ekiti and Osun states in 2014 and the 2015 general elections.
“ The board sat down, called for memoranda, completed its assignment and submitted a report. Based on the recommendations, the Army Council met and took some decisions.”
Capt. Koli, who recorded the conversation at a meeting where the plot to rig the Ekiti election was hatched, has been reabsorbed into the army.
He is said to be on a post-graduate course abroad and thereafter he might proceed on a professional training which can make his career elevation possible in the future.
Another source said: “The Board of Inquiry strongly commended Capt. Koli and the Army Council took judicious notice of this. He has since been reabsorbed into the Nigerian Army.
“The initial plan was to make Capt. Koli a Defence Attaché but after counseling, he opted for a post-graduate course and professional training.
“For security reasons, we cannot disclose his location at the moment.”
The Chairman of the Nigerian Army Board of Inquiry, Major General Adeniyi Oyebade (the General Officer Commanding 1 Division) on January 11 submitted a report to Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Tukur Buratai.
He said 23 officers, over 100 soldiers and 62 civilians appeared before it as well as 62 civilians.
He said the board made far-reaching recommendations that would assist the Nigerian Army and the nation in the future.
He disclosed that two officers were recommended for compulsory retirement, three to lose their commands and one for prosecution for collecting financial gratification.
Fifteen officers were placed on watch list, nine for further investigation by the EFCC and six officers to face an audit committee.
The board advised that 62 officers (mostly Majors and below) were to be given letters of displeasure and to appear before their General Officers Commanding for counselling.