By Olayinka Adediran
The Nigerian Army has promised to investigate the allegations of a female soldier who accused some senior officers of abusing her.
In a viral video, a female soldier, not putting on a uniform, accused some senior officers of maltreatment.
In a statement on Friday, the Director of Army Public Relations, Major General Nwachukwu Onyema, said the investigation was on to ascertain the extent of her claims.
Onyema also slammed the female soldier, adding that she did not seek redress according to the laid down procedure.
The statement read: “The Nigerian Army has been inundated with audiovisuals making the rounds on social media of the unprofessional conduct of a female soldier in mufti who claimed to have been maltreated by some senior officers.
“It is instructive to state that, considering the gravity of the allegations, NA, as a disciplined force, will conduct a thorough investigation into the matter.
“It is crucial to point out that contrary to the claims made in the video, the soldier in question has not exhausted the laid-down procedure for seeking redress in the NA. This is aside from Human Rights and Gender Desks established in Army Headquarters and across NA formations, where complaints about human rights and gender issues are also entertained.
“The NA remains a professional force that self-regulates and conducts its activities in adherence to established rules and ethics while upholding the highest standards of discipline amongst personnel. We therefore encourage all personnel to always utilise the established channels for addressing grievances and concerns as a member of a noble and disciplined force.”
Onyema said that appropriate actions would be taken in line with the findings of the investigation.
“We assure the general public that the NA as an institution is committed to upholding the integrity and morals of its personnel and as such, appropriate actions will be taken based on the findings of the investigation.
“We urge the public to allow the investigative process to take its course and refrain from making hasty judgments. The NA remains dedicated to serving our nation with honour and integrity,” the statement added.
This is the latest in reports of maltreatment by soldiers of the Nigerian army.
Inibehe Effiong, a public interest and human rights lawyer, recently filed a petition to the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Taoreed Lagbaja.
Effiong requested that the Army personnel responsible for assaulting a police officer, Edet Inyang, an Assistant Superintendent of Police, be identified and held accountable for their actions.
According to him, Inyang was subjected to torture by a group of Army personnel near the Nigerian Army’s 63 Brigade in Asaba, Delta State.
The incident reportedly took place on December 9, 2023 at a store where the policeman had gone to buy personal items.
Similarly, in November 2023, the Adamawa State Police Command headquarters in Yola was allegedly invaded by Nigerian Army personnel, who killed an Inspector of Police identified as Jacob Daniel.
President Bola Tinubu had in December issued a stern warning to the Nigerian Army to desist from carrying out retaliatory assaults on the police or the civilian population over any provocation