- The Nigerian army has come under intense criticisms for the conduct of its personnel in the just concluded 2019 elections
- The Bayelsa state deputy governor, Rear Admiral John Jonah (rtd) has however, exonerated the army of any wrongdoings
- He appealed to Nigerians to continue to support the Nigerian army which he described as a stabilising factor
The Bayelsa state deputy governor, has urged Nigerians not to blame the army for its involvement in the 2019 general elections.
Jonah said this on Saturday, March 16 at Elebele in Yenogoa, the Bayelsa state capital, during the inauguration of some projects in the 16 Brigade Barracks otherwise known as “Tukur Buratai Camp” located in the community.
The deputy governor said he had investigated the army involvement in the elections and found that what they did was not different from what the Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Tukur Buratai instructed.
Buratai had at different fora said the constitution empowers the army to support civil authority in addressing internal security challenges when called upon, citing Section 217 of the 1999 constitution as amended.
The army chief said this role also extend to providing security during elections.
He, however, warned those deployed for the conduct of the elections to be professional, respect human rights and reain apolitical.
Buratai who was represented by Maj.-Gen. A. A. Saliu, the Commander, Training and Doctrine Command – TRADOC, charged commanders to always impact positively on their environment.
He promised more fund to provide required infrastructure in the Brigade and army formations across the country.
Buratai also called on the citizens to cooperate with the military by providing it with useful information to enable it ensure their safety.
The building inaugurated included Guard house, a two-storey medical centre, Brigade Garrison, soldiers and warrant officers/sergeant clubs and a block of 30 flats for corporal and below.
Meanwhile, the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Ondo has called on the military command to investigate the roles played by its personnel before and during the state House of Assembly election in Idanre local government area of the state.
The appeal was made in a statement by Mr Alex Kalejaye, the Ondo APC state spokesman, on Wednesday, March 13 in Akure.
His words: “In Idanre for instance, wife of a former Chief of Army Staff, turned the peaceful town to a theatre of war. The entire place was militarised. And as a result of this, members of APC were ma*med, brutalized, harassed, intimidated, and scared away from performing their legitimate assignment.
“It is, therefore, important for military command to investigate this target on our party members and ensure appropriate sanction to erring personnel.”
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