- The Nigerian Army has nabbed 13 fake military personnel parading themselves as senior officers
- Various military accoutrements were found in their possession
- The impostors were arrested based on credible information and would be prosecuted
Thirteen fake military personnel have been arrested by decoy operatives of 81 Division of the Nigerian Army.
Among those arrested are a Lieutenant-Colonel Afolabi Hassan and a Major Afolabi Allen Adegboyega, who had been parading themselves as senior officers of the army for 12 years.
The Guardian reports that the suspects were arrested during the ongoing ‘Operation Checkmate’. They were in possession of various military accoutrements.
The suspects who were nabbed following credible information were paraded on Thursday, April 30, at the division’s headquarters in Victoria Island, Lagos.
According to the General Officer Commanding (GOC), 81 Division, Maj.-Gen. Olu Irefin, the fake Lt. Col. was arrested wearing complete NA woodland camouflage uniform with a Lt.- Col. rank badge, and a Military Police (MP) badges.
Hassan is said to have been impersonating as an officer of the NA since 2008, and had been previously arrested for the offence.
One NA pullover, one woodland camouflage T-Shirt, and five NA uniforms were discovered during a search at his residence, at No. 19, Clem Road, Ojokoro, Lagos.
Also discovered at the residence of the suspects were big picture frames, with pictures of them wearing their fake ranks.
“I think one thing the lockdown has done for Lagos is that our operation checkmate, which was initially meant to check our soldiers from breaking the law, is yielding more results. Today we have 13 impostors paraded," Irefin said.
He said the army authority will find out how the suspects got the uniforms and they will be prosecuted.
Irefin called on security agencies on law enforcement to always verify that soldiers are not impostors by checking their Identity Cards.
According to one of the suspects, 45-year-old Hassan, he bought the military accoutrements from Abacha Barracks Market in Abuja. He also claimed to be a dismissed soldier since 2016.
Also speaking, 52-year-old Adegboyega said he posed as a military officer to scare land grabbers who had threatened to take over his property at Sango, Ogun state.
Other arrested suspects included: Joseph Okere, Emmanuel Akpaka, Frank Eze, Ahmed Ameh, Sunday Olawale, Siasia Sunday, Festus Nwanozie, Ebenezer Adeleke, Joseph Gabriel, Ibe Eze and Joel Akpan.
Meanwhile, the Arewa Action for Change and Peace (AACP) has urged the Nigerian Army to sustain its momentum against Boko Haram/ISWAP terrorists.
A statement signed by the Arewa youths president, Haske Abdulmuminu, on Monday, April 20, said Nigerian Army's mission to eliminate the terrorists is closer than envisaged, especially with the charismatic, dogged and resilient of the chief of army staff.
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