The Nigerian army has reacted to the report published by Amnesty International alluding to its negligence of human right issues and its half-hearted views on war crimes. The article by Amnesty international which was triggered by the reinstatement of Major General Ahmadu Mohammed and accused both President Muhammadu Buhari and the Nigerian army of failing to keep their commitment to ending war crimes, was widely noised in online news media.
The army has requested that Amnesty International provide the needed evidence with records that directly indict General Mohammed on said war crimes to enable them act on it. Amnesty which had sounded out its outrage on the matter and stated that “Young men and boys, rounded up by the military, were either shot, starved, suffocated or tortured to death and no one has yet been held to account. It is unthinkable that Major General Mohammed could resume command of troops before an investigation has even begun,” was accused of being basically emotional.
In a statement signed by the Army Public Relations, Acting Director, Col Sani Usman, the army replies; “The attention of the Nigerian Army has been drawn to media reports that the human rights group-Amnesty International, has frowned at the reinstatement of Major General Ahmadu Mohammed into military service, alleging that he was involved in human rights abuses while he was the General Officer Commanding 7 Division. The Nigerian Army wishes to thank the exalted body for this observation.”
The army continues in a practically lecturing tone to the international body;
“The compulsory and premature retirement of Major General Mohammed did not follow due process and was rather arbitrary. The senior officer was never charged, tried, let alone found guilty of any offence that justified his premature retirement. The action was therefore a clear violation of extant rules, regulations, as well as Terms and Conditions of Service of the Armed Forces of Nigeria. This obvious violation prompted the senior officer to seek redress using the appropriate legal means.”
“Consequently, the realization of these omissions called for a review of the case by the Army Council and his subsequent reinstatement into the Service. Evidently, the objection to his reinstatement into the Nigerian Army was ill-informed and being respecter of law, the protector and promoter of human rights, the organization should be guided by this principle and not by sentiments or act on the basis of misinformation,”
Its left to see if Amnesty International will rest its case on what it has said before and leave the matter in good faith either to die or be picked up by private investigators as it suggested or if it will take the army up on its offer of providing the needed evidence and proof.