About 227 members of the Nigerian Army, who were allegedly dismissed by the General Officer Commanding (GOC) 3 Armoured Division Jos, Plateau State, yesterday protested their unlawful dismissal by the GOC, asking President Goodluck Jonathan and Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General Kenneth Minimah, to intervene in the matter with a view to reinstating them.
The soldiers, who stormed the Plateau State Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) secretariat with placards bearing different messages, among them, “how can we fight without weapons and we need justice in Nigerian Army”.
The leader of the protesting soldiers, Sergeant Abiona Elisha, said, “We were dismissed this week Tuesday from the service of the Nigerian Army after sending us to go and suffer fighting insurgency in Adamawa, Yobe and Borno states.
“All of a sudden, we were recalled to the barracks and made to face trial. Even in the trial, we were not given the chance to defend ourselves. They just took decision and dismissed us. We were not even told what our offences were during the so-called trial.
“We are surprised that we can be treated like this in our own country. We were sent to fight insurgents without weapons. A lot of our colleagues were killed in the course of defending our fatherland. Even those who are in hospitals treating injuries they sustained from battle fields were also dismissed while still on hospital admission.
“The worst situation is that families of our colleagues killed in Adamawa and Yobe are languishing in hunger as Nigerian Army refused to pay their entitlements”.
The protesting soldiers further alleged that their families as well as personal property were ejected from the barracks before they arrived in Jos from their operational base in Borno, Adamawa and Yobe states.
However, when contacted, the deputy director, army public relation of the 3 Armoured Division Jos, Col. Texas Chukwu, denied knowledge of the dismissal of the soldiers.
He said, “I have no knowledge of the issue, I just came back from Maiduguri, I am not aware if any soldier was dismissed”.
Similarly, the Nigerian Army headquarters denied that there was a protest by soldiers in Jos.
The Director of Army Public Relations, Brigadier General Olajide Laleye, said he was yet to be briefed on any such development by the authorities of 3 Armoured Div. Jos.
Several Injured As Thugs Attack #EndSARS Protesters, Governor Oyetola In Osun
Some of the vehicles in the Governor’s convoy were also destroyed by the thugs but the Governor himself was evacuated to safety by his security team.
As the convoy was leaving the protest venue, some of the youths continued to stone his vehicles.
While the protest was disrupted, Governor Oyetola assured the injured victims that the government would be responsible for their medical bills.
#EndSARS: Sanwo-Olu Constitutes Panel Of Enquiry
In a bid to quell the #EndSARS protest which is spreading like a raging inferno across the country, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, the Governor of Lagos State has set up a panel of inquiry and restitution for victims of SARS.
This was announced in a statewide broadcast on Thursday.
The panel will be a 7-man panel which will ensure that all those with verifiable cases of SARS brutality or fatality receive compensation.
The Panel will be chaired by retired Justice Doris Okuwobi, while members are Ebun Adegboruwa, SAN (representing the Civil Society), Taiwo Lakanu (a retired Deputy Inspector General of Police), Patience Udoh (representing the Civil Society); Segun Awosanya aka Segalink (Human Rights Activist).
Others are Olutoyin Odusanya (Director, Citizens Mediation Center), a rep/member of the youth-led protest, and a representative of the Human Rights Commission.
There will be a help desk for the complaints and petitions to the panel.
Governor Seyi Makinde Loses 81-Yr-Old Mother
Abigail Makinde, the mother of the governor of Oyo State, Seyi Makinde, is dead.
The Chief Press Secretary to Mr Makinde, Taiwo Adisa, however, told newsmen that the family will soon make an official statement on the death of the deceased.
He said: “Yes. The family will make an official statement.
“The family will soon make an official statement. In the next few minutes, the family will make an official statement, in few minutes.”
It was gathered that Mr Makinde lost his father, Olatunbosun Makinde, a few years ago.
It was learnt that Mrs Makinde died in the early hours of Thursday.
She died at the age of 81.
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