Everything look illegal and unprofessional from the President of Nigeria after he fired some army officers.
Mr Suleiman was so key to Nigeria’s counter-terrorism efforts that his deployments for services abroad, for instance in Darfur and Washington, were repeatedly cancelled and, in another case, he was recalled from Command and Staff College, Jaji, as directing staff, to help track a globally wanted terrorist, Adam Kambar.
He initiated the creation of the Civilian Joint Task Force (CJTF) and controlled their activities in Borno State, before collaborating with 3rd Division of the Army to have Civilian JTF in Adamawa State. He was key to the “arrest of and appropriate provision of information on the first successfully prosecuted Boko Haram pioneer spokesman, Umar Sanda Kodunga.”
Emphasizing “service exigencies” and that the “military must remain apolitical and professional at all times,” then army spokesperson, Sani Usman, now a retired brigadier-general, on June 10, 2016, released a statement, disclosing what could have constituted the “serious offences” which warranted the 38 officers to be compulsorily retired.
“It should be recalled that not too long ago some officers were investigated for being partisan during the 2015 general elections,” the statement then read. “Similarly, the investigation by the Presidential Committee investigating Defence Contracts revealed a lot. Some officers have already been arraigned in court by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).”
However, contrary to the claim by the army, our investigations showed that only a few of the affected officers were queried, tried and indicted.
Others, like Mr Suleiman and Mr Mohammed, had their careers abruptly cut short for reasons that smacked of high-level arbitrariness, pettiness, witch-hunting and partisanship by authorities of the Army.