- A Nigerian Army officer has emerged the best graduating student in a United Kingdom university
- Mahor Ajibade Atobatele, a Nigerian Army lawyer, made a distinction in International Human Rights and Terrorism Law in his class
- The director of post graduate studies in the institution said Atobatele performed exceptionally well and achieved the highest mark of his cohort
A Nigerian Army lawyer, Major Ajibade Azeez Atobatele, of the Directorate of Army Legal Services, studying in the United Kingdom, has emerged the best in International Human Rights and Terrorism Law in his class.
Atobatele distinguished himself by finishing with a distinction by coming top position in his class in the UK.
The Nigerian Army officer also bagged the Best Dissertation Award of the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, University of Lancaster, one of the top 10 universities in the United Kingdom.
Honoured at the convocation ceremony of the University, which was held in the UK, the director of postgraduate programmes in the Lancaster University Law School, Professor Sigrun Skogly, in a written letter confirmed Atobatele’s brilliant academic performance.
Skogly who wrote to the Nigerian Embassy in London said the Army officer performed exceptionally well and achieved the highest mark of his cohort – a mark she described as rarely awarded by the university.
The Law School further confirmed that Atobatele had been offered a doctoral degree admission in order to further his research on legal issues surrounding the war against insurgency in Nigeria.
Speaking on the feat achieved by the Nigerian Army through Atobatele, the general secretary of the committee for the Defence of Human Rights, Comrade Olayinka Folarin, expressed confidence that allowing military officers to go for such courses in human rights and returning to apply the knowledge acquired, regarding the observance of the rules of engagement, would ultimately help to regulate the conduct of troops during operations.
Folarin said the efforts by the Army to improve respect for human rights of persons during their operations would also result in raising the rating of the country’s human rights record in the global arena.
He said: “I believe it will regulate their conduct as far as human rights is concerned in the fight against terrorism. It is a welcome development. It will enhance their performance; it will enhance their conduct."
"We just believe that by having their men studying such courses and coming back to apply it, it would go a long way in building confidence in the Nigerian military because everyone should be accorded his or her human rights," Folarin said .
Also speaking, a defence analyst and strategist, Adesola Olatunji, said allowing military officers to undergo such courses would go a long way in checking the alleged violation of human rights of citizens by military personnel involved in combating terrorism and insurgency across the country.
Olatunji said the development would also improve the poor rating of the human rights record of both the military and the Nigerian nation by international human rights bodies.
“This development has brought to the fore, the commitment of the present administration of President Muhammadu Buhari and the vision of the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai, in having a professionally responsive Army discharging its constitutional role in strict compliance with the various international conventions on human rights, especially in its war against terrorism,” Olatunji said.
Meanwhile, Legit.ng previously reported that General Buratai, had said that the Nigerian Army will continue to collaborate with stakeholders to have a professionally responsive Army.
Buratai spoke on Monday, April 1, in Abuja, at a seminar on `Regimentation and Combating Security Challenges Associated with Forests and Protected Areas in Nigeria.’’
The theme of the seminar is: “Enhancing Synergy between the Nigerian Army and National Park Service: National Security in Perspective.’’
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