13 March 2018

Nigeria: Army Chief Urged to Probe Soldiers' Brutality

Warri — A rights lawyer in Warri, Delta State, Mr. Oghenejabor Ikimi, has enjoined the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai, to investigate alleged brutalisation of his client, Mr. Freedom Odiete, by soldiers in Warri.

In a petition to the Chief of Army Staff supported with photographs, Ikimi said the army chief should order an unbiased investigation into the alleged act by his men so that those found culpable will be sanctioned in line with military tradition.

The petition read: "Our client has briefed our law firm to put up this petition to your office in a bid to cause a thorough and unbiased investigation into the unlawful arrest, severe torture and stigmatisation meted to our client by your men, whose unprofessional conduct contravenes all military norms and ethics.

"We, therefore, call on you to order an independent and impartial investigation into the above incident so as to discourage indiscipline in the Nigerian Army.

"It is our brief that our client was intercepted at the popular Jigbale Market, Ovwian, Delta State, by eight soldiers led by (name withheld) at the 3 Battalion, Effurun Barracks, who ordered our client at gunpoint to come down from his vehicle and enter the Hilux van conveying the soldiers.

"Our client complied and was thus whisked away to the Army Barracks, Effurun.

"It is our brief that at the said barrack, our client was stripped naked, his limbs handcuffed, flogged intermittently for an hour, during which time the said soldiers ordered our client to tell them the whereabouts of a suspect or else our client would be shot dead.

"Our client informed the said soldiers that he knows nothing about the whereabouts of the said suspect."


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