Nigerian Soldiers: Secret Evidence At Mutiny Trial

Nigerian Soldiers: Secret Evidence At Mutiny Trial

Monday, November 10, 2014 4:10 pm

David Edremoda

Many soldiers are being court-martialed for alleged mutiny. Will the military kill them?

The soldiers looked woebegone. They were led into the dock like cows into a slaughter slab. Poor souls! With creases on their foreheads, they shuffled and wringed their hands as they sat, hunched like letter “C”. The look on the face of each was vacant and distant, a human representation of sphinx.

The first day the trial began, the military high command––determined to show the world that it was ready, in a pincer attack, to fight Boko Haram and, at the same time, deal ruthlessly with fifth columnists and deserters among the rank and file––invited the media to cover it. That was the trial of the 12 Nigerian soldiers who the military authorities sentenced to death on Monday 15 September 2004. The verdict which landed on the soldiers’ heads has, since then, generated much heat within the military and on civvy street.

With glee, the Nigerian Defence apparatus again invited the Fourth Estate of the Realm to the trial of the Group of 60, or 59, as the case may be, which started on 15 October. In fact, the Army authorities thought this would be a walkover like the first. The fat generals, respledent in their starched uniforms, epaulettes, array of medals and swagger sticks, expected, as usual, that a recording of the proceedings would be brought to their offices by their ever-fawning batmen. However, it turned out that it would not be as easy the way hot knife would slice through butter.

•The Court Martial where 59 soldiers are being tried

•The Court Martial where 59 soldiers are being tried

What happened at that trial, especially, the revelations so embarrassed the military that the brass hats issued an order that journalists should not be allowed into the Mogadishu Barracks, Abuja, venue of the trial.

In fact, this raised the antennae of TheNEWS into thinking that something subterranean was afoot. The medium, therefore, decided to tap its military sources. What it found could render many jaws hanging slack for days!

The prosecution led the witnesses in evidence while they were cross-examined by the defence counsel. The issues that came up were poor funding, inadequate personnel, obsolete and limited equipment compared to those paraded by Boko Haram, Nigerian soldiers’ bogeyman.

Defence counsel, according to military sources, argued trenchantly that given all the above, it would smack of suicide tendency to confront Boko Haram with little or no weapons and that, it would smack of injustice and sheer slaughter to sentence these soldiers to the gallows.

Moreover, analysts argued, it flies against universal military tactics and strategy, as propounded by great authorities like Sun Tzu in his The Art of War and the German military theoretician, Cart von Clausewitz, to send soldiers to the war front with bad weapons and without adequate preparation. If, as Clausewitz propounded in his magnum opus, On War, that battle is “an act of violence to compel our opponent to fulfill our will”, analysts in Nigerian are of the opinion that for the country to make Boko Haram to stop violence, it must boost the morale of its soldiers and give them weapons to fight. However, the reverse is the case, according to the statements by the witnesses at the mutiny trial.

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One Comment

  • BillORights says:


    ALWAYS Qatar.

    misterchambers . COM/2014/05/21/the-nigerian-connection-boko-haram-obama-and-qatar/

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