The Nigerian Army is set to court-martial over 100 soldiers for a number of offences bordering around the current fight against Boko Haram insurgency in the country.
118 soldiers have been transported from Maiduguri, the Borno State capital, to face charges in Abuja, online news platform, Premium Times reported, citing unnamed sources. They however said the timing of the arraignment was unclear.
This is coming just a week after 54 soldiers were sentenced to death for refusing to fight Boko Haram. 12 soldiers were also in September condemned to death by a military General Court Martial in Abuja for acts of mutiny, among others. The 100 soldiers were however not accused of mutiny.
Sources said that the soldiers are facing trial over relatively minor charges including loss or misplacement of rifles during operations against Boko Haram.
Army spokesperson, Olajide Laleye, said he was unaware of the development.
Meanwhile Lead counsel to the 54 soldiers sentenced to death over mutiny, and Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Femi Falana has said he would use every legal machinery at his disposal to ensure the soldiers are not killed, as it would amount to genocide.
“Convinced that soldiers who made a legitimate demand for equipment to fight the insurgents cannot, by any stretch of imagination, be properly convicted for mutiny; we shall take all necessary legal measures to prevent the army authorities from giving effect to the genocidal verdict of the court-martial.
“The oath of allegiance taken by the accused soldiers is not a license to commit suicide. It is a solemn undertaking to defend the nation based on the expectation that the Federal Government would have complied with Section 217 of the Constitution on the mandatory requirement to equip the armed forces adequately,” said Falana.