MUTINY: BURATAI COMMUTES DEATH SENTENCES ON 66 SOLDIERS TO 10 YEARS JAIL TERMS.
The Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General Tukur Buratai has commuted the death sentences passed on 66 soldiers who were tried by several Military Court Martials for mutiny and other offences in the fight against Boko Haram terrorists’ in the North East to terms of 10 years imprisonment.
A Statement detailing the action of General Buratai, signed by the Acting Director, Army Public Relations, said, “The death sentences by firing squad passed on 66 soldiers in January and March 2015 by separate General Court Martials have been commuted to 10 years imprisonment each.
“It will be recalled that 71 soldiers were arraigned on several charges in joint trials. The soldiers were arraigned on several count charges that include Criminal Conspiracy, Conspiracy to commit mutiny and Mutiny.
“Others are Attempt to Commit an Offence (Murder), Disobedience to Particular Orders, Insubordinate Behaviour and False Accusation, amongst others.
“They (soldiers) were tried, discharged on some charges but found guilty and convicted on other charges which included mutiny.
“Out of the number, 66 were found guilty on some of the charges and sentenced to death, while 5 were discharged and acquitted and one was given 28 days Imprisonment with Hard Labour (IHL).
“However, following series of petitions, the Chief of Army Staff Lieutenant General Tukur Yusufu Buratai, ordered a legal review of the cases. The directive was carried out to examine the merit of each case.
“It was on the basis of the review and recommendations that the Chief of Army Staff commuted the death sentences of the 66 soldiers to 10 years jail term. The sentences are to run concurrently.
“The cases of other soldiers are being reviewed and will be made public once the appropriate reviews are completed.”
It be recalled that earlier on, over 3, 000 soldiers who were punished and dismissed for various other offences had their sentences reviewed by the Major General Adeniyi Oyebade (GOC 1 div) review committee which sat in Kaduna resulting in their pardon of our over 5, 000 soldiers that wrote petition and begged to be reabsorbed.
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