The Nigerian Army said on Wednesday that 579 of its officers and men had been court martialed for sundry offences.
The army authorities also explained that the Army Council had not sat to either confirm or reverse the death sentence passed last year on 66 soldiers convicted for mutiny by a general court-martial, making it difficult for the victims to appeal the verdict.
Addressing journalists, the acting director of army public relations (DAPR), Colonel Sani Usman said, “There are currently two separate courts-martial going on in the Army Headquarters Garrison and 81 Division Nigerian Army, with a view to ensuring quick dispensation of justice, discipline and professionalism.”
Usman further said that 473 of the soldiers were facing the court martial at the Army Headquarters Garrison, while 106 soldiers were standing trial at 81 Division, Lagos State.
The soldiers were said to be facing trial for offences ranging from insubordination and disobedience to acts of cowardice, refusal to carry out military duties and indiscipline, amongst others.
According to Usman, it was common practice in the military to court martial any soldier who runs foul or the law and whom the authorities feel cannot be summarily dismissed.
Source: The Punch