September 17, (THEWILL) – The Defence Headquarters has asked aggrieved personnel to follow the laid-down rules for seeking redress.
The military, in a statement by the Director of Defence Information, Major General Benjamin Sawyerr, was reacting to former military personnel who appeared on a human rights programme in Abuja to seek justice.
Sawyerr said the ex-military personnel were dismissed for various acts of indiscipline, adding that their actions and that of the radio station were meant to disparage the military.
“Joining the service was voluntary, personnel must adhere to the rules. There are procedures of ensuring the administration of military justice and discipline in the Armed Forces even if dismissed,” he added.
He said, “The attention of the Defence Headquarters has been drawn to several social media videos posted online as well as a live broadcast on a human rights radio in Abuja. Some allegedly aggrieved ex-military personnel, who were paraded, complained against various disciplinary actions taken against them by their respective services. In the video and live broadcast programme.
“Some of the ex-soldiers, most of whom were dismissed from Service for various acts of indiscipline and misdemeanours, made efforts to rationalise or give excuses for the various infractions that led to their exit from service using uncouth language.
“While the military respects everyone’s right to free expression and justice, it is important to know that the military profession has its peculiarity that borders on discipline, truth and respect. It also has a standard and effective procedure of seeking redress by any aggrieved personnel, even if dismissed.”
Sawyerr further stated that whenever issues of Service discipline arise the media ought to give the army a benefit of the doubt.
“It is advisable that whenever issues of Service discipline arise the media should give the respective Services benefit of the doubt to address the issues raised rather than jump into conclusion of injustice and grant them airtime to reel out falsehood to justify their dismissal from service.
“The Armed Forces of Nigeria view the action of these online and Human Right radio and Television stations as an act designed to portray the AFN in a bad light, despite all efforts the institution is putting in place to secure the nation,” he added.