Nigeria Army probes visual footage of protesting soldiers in Sokoto

Nigeria Army probes visual footage of protesting soldiers in Sokoto

The Army Headquarters has announced investigation into a viral footage showing soldiers protesting at the 8 Division Garrison detention facility in Sokoto.

The footage, circulating on social media, depicts personnel held in custody expressing grievances.

In a statement signed Saturday by Onyema Nwachukwu, Major General Director Army Public Relations, the Army regretted the incident adding that it would not condone the soldiers’ behaviour, which constitutes mutiny and misconduct.

According to the report, the Chief of Army Staff has ordered a probe to determine if the incident is isolated or widespread in similar facilities.

“Undoubtedly, the Sokoto barracks detention facility incident is quite unfortunate and an embarrassment to the sound administration efforts of the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), to say the least, and in line with his leadership style, the COAS has instituted an appropriate investigation into the incident to determine whether it is an isolated or widespread situation in similar detention facilities.

“While the service regrets and has gleaned some lessons from the incident, it will however not condone the manner the inmates expressed their purported grievance. Mutiny and conduct prejudicial to service order are grievous misconducts, and this very incident epitomises such.

“As such, as Army, on the one side, goes ahead to implement the COAS directive to look into the state of all NA detention facilities, as detainees’ lives also matter, the Service shall not shy away from appropriately sanctioning the soldiers involved in the unruly behaviour in its Sokoto detention facility for failing to exhaust all available options to channel their complaints to the appropriate authorities and if it was discovered they did and nothing was done, necessary administrative actions will be taken against anyone found to have failed to discharge his/her duties effectively.

“While the Service is mindful of its subjective oversight engagements by statutory bodies, it remains primarily a responsible, self-regulating professional body. As such, the Service remains committed to ensuring that everyone, even those found guilty of aiding terrorists, kidnappers, and bandits, and are awaiting confirmation of their sentencing, as it has been discovered in the Sokoto case is accorded a relatively decent life until their judgment is confirmed and executed. This commitment underscores the NA’s dedication to upholding professional standards and maintaining a just and fair system.

“The NA appreciates all Nigerians for their concern and support as well as pledge to remain focused on its drive to defeating security challenges facing the nation in conjunction with sister services and other security agencies,” the statement added.

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