Daily Champion (Lagos)

Nigeria: Jonathan Sacks GOCs, Redeploys Others

Abuja — President Goodluck Jonathan has approved the immediate removal of top military officers, including General Officers Commanding (GOCs) all the Nigerian Army divisions and Brigade of Guard commanders with immediate effect.

But the Director of Army Public Relations, Brigadier General Chris Olukolade, in a release, yesterday, a copy of which was made available to Saturday Champion in Abuja, said the officers were redeployed.

The sacked GOC's include, Major General KA Role, 1st Division, headquartered in Kaduna in the north-west; Major General Lawrence Ngubane, 2nd Division (HQ Ibadan in the South-West, which include 32 Artillery Brigade at Abeokuta); Major General Saleh Maina, 3rd Armored Division (HQ Rukuba Cantonment, Jos, in the North-East, including 21 Armoured Brigade, Maiduguri, 23 Brigade, Yola, and 33 Artillery Brigade.

Others are Major General Eugene Nwanguma, 81st Division (Amphibious) HQ in Lagos), which include the 9th Brigade, Ikeja; Maj Gen. MD Isah, 82nd Division (Airborne and Amphibious) HQ in Enugu, which include the 2 Brigade in Port Harcourt, 13 Brigade, Calabar and the 34 Artillery Brigade at Obinze/Owerri.

The Composite Division in Enugu was formed in 1964 as 4th Infantry Division, in 1975 became Lagos Garrison Organization; in 1981 became 4th Composite Division; became a Composite Division in May 2002.

Brigadier General Olukolade, noted that the posting, which affected all Principal Staff Officers, formation and Corps commanders as well as commandants of training institutions and some staff officers of Defence and Army Headquarters, led to the reshuffle.

By the new development, Major General J.O Shoboiki becomes the GOC, 1 Division, Kaduna; Brigadier General M.D Abubakar, GOC, 2 Division, Ibadan; Major General S.O Idoko, GOC 3 Division, Jos; while Brigadier General KTJ Minimah becomes the GOC 81 Division, Lagos. Major General SY Bello is the GOC, 82 Division, Enugu.

Others include Brigadier General MA Nasamu, now Commander, Army Headquarters Garrison and Colonel EJ Atewe, Commander of the Brigade of Guards.

The development also saw Major General CO Onwuamaegbu as the new Commandant of the Nigerian Defence Academy, just as Major General MA Yerima moves to the Defence Headquarters as the Chief of Training and Operations. The new Commander of the Joint Task Force is now Major General CO Omoregie.

Saturday Champion was also reliably informed that the development is to enable President Jonathan monitor security situation more efficiently ahead of the 2011 general elections.

It would be recalled that the president had, few weeks ago, sacked all the service chiefs as well as the Director-General of the State Security Services and the Inspector General of Police.

The president, who is away to the United States, yesterday, addressed the United Nations General Assembly at the ongoing meeting on Millennium Development Goal.

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