Saturday, December 19, 2015

Nigerian Military Commutes Death Penalty of 66 Soldiers to Jail terms.

PREMIUM TIMES: The death sentences by firing squad passed on 66 soldiers in January and March 2015 by separate General Court Martials have been commuted to 10 years imprisonment each, the spokesperson for the Nigerian Army, Sani Usman, has said.

The Army had in late 2014 arraigned 71 soldiers on several count charges that included criminal conspiracy, conspiracy to commit mutiny, mutiny, attempt to commit an offence (murder), disobedience to particular orders, insubordinate behaviour and false accusation, among others.

They were tried, discharged on some charges but found guilty and convicted on other charges, which included mutiny.

Of the 71, 66 were found guilty on some of the charges and sentenced to death, while five were discharged and acquitted and one was given 28-day imprisonment with hard labour.

Mr. Usman, a colonel said following a series of petitions, the Chief of Army Staff Tukur Buratai, a Lieutenant General, ordered a legal review of the cases.

“The directive was carried out to examine the merit of each case,” the Army spokesperson said in a statement Saturday.

“It was on the basis of the review and recommendations that the Chief of Army Staff commuted the death sentences of the 66 soldiers to 10-year jail term.

“The sentences are to run concurrently.”

Mr. Usman said the cases of other soldiers tried and convicted by other court martials were being reviewed and would be made public once appropriate reviews were completed.


The Nigerian military had on October 2, 2014, at the Defence Headquarters Garrison inaugurated a nine-man General Court-Martial to try about a hundred personnel.
The personnel were charged for different offences ranging from mutiny, assault and misconduct to tampering with military property.

Of the lot, 66 were accused of committing mutiny, a crime punishable under the military law by death sentence.

The charge sheet said the soldiers, attached to the 7 Division in Maiduguri, conspired to commit mutiny against the authorities of the 7 Division on August 4, at the Mulai Primary School camp, opposite AIT Maiduguri, Borno State.

It also said the soldiers refused to join 111 Special Forces battalion troops led by E. A. Aladeniyi, a colonel, to the Maimalari Barracks for an operation.

“In that you at the Mulai Primary School Camp opposite AIT Maiduguri on or about 4 August 14, refused to join 111 SF Bn troops led by Col EA Aladeniyi (N/9695) to Maimalari Barracks in connection with an operation,” the charge sheet read.

Those charges came two weeks after another military court sentenced 12 soldiers to death for shooting at a vehicle conveying their commander in Maiduguri.

Five other soldiers were discharged and acquitted while one was sentenced to 28 years jail term with hard labour.

The soldiers were also accused of insurrection and firing at the utility vehicle of their general officer commanding, GOC of the same 7 Division, Ahmadu Mohammed.
Many Nigerians condemned the death sentences at the time and demanded a review.

Below is a list of some of the soldiers who faced mutiny and other charges.

1. Cpl Andrew Ogolekwu
2. Cpl Saturday Efa
3. LCpl Henry Shuaibu
4. LCpl James Maifada
5. LCpl Ndubuisi Sabestine
6. LCpl Dauda Dalhatu
7. LCpl Kasega Aoso
8. LCpl Mallam Jacob
9. LCpl Nwonu Friday
10. LCpl Joshua Friday
11. LCpl Anthony Simeon
12. Pte Olayode Oluwasegun
13. Pte Tijjani Jimoh
14. Pte Kabiru Abubakar
15. Pte Mamuda Sywasan
16. Pte James Emmanuel
17. Pte Mukaila Musa
18. Pte Magaji Ahmadu
19. Pte Amao Bukola
20. Pte Wuyep John
21. Pte Oti Kelvin
22. Pte Ameh Mathew
23. Pte Olaitan Joseph
24. Pte Kulukulu Endurance
25. Pte Usman Isaac
26. Pte Ocheje Williams
27. Pte Adila Dangana
28. Pte Sudan Hannania
29. Pte Sunday Godwin
30. Pte Datti Hassan
31. Pte Abubakar Garba
32. Pte Joseph Dauda
33. Pte Chiemela Azubuike
34. Pte Abubakar Mohammed
35. Pte Anagu Mark
36. Pte Danbaba Francis
37. Pte Oton Asuabiat
38. Pte Nwachukwu Udo
39. Pte Ibrahim Saliu
40. Pte Abafe Sylvester
41. Pte Eze Isaac
42. Pte Abubakar Mohammed
43. Pte Samuel Michael
44. Pte Ishaya Musa
45. Pte Ogai Douglas
46. Pte Atim Peter
47. Pte Hemas Okpe
48. Pte Ahunaya Temple
49. Pte Eyaknse Uwah
50. Pte Ilesanmi S.
51. Pte Solomon Ishaku
52. Pte Nasiru Zubairu
53. Pte Audu Daniel
54. Pte Buaz Lucky
55. Pte Muhammed Abubakar
56. Pte Anas Awalu
57. Pte Babangida Jamilu
58. Pte Hashimu Ibrahim
59. Pte Mohammed Suleiman
60  Pte Shehu Sa'adu

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