Dasukigate: Army defends Buratai over allged involvement in $2.1billion Arms Scam.

    Dasukigate: Army defends Buratai over allged involvement in $2.1billion Arms Scam.
    Following the allegation by a group, ‘Save the Nation Movement’, noting that the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General Tukur Buratai was part and percel of those who partook in the $2.1billion arms scandal for which 18 Generals of the military have been shortlisted for investigation, the authorities of the Nigerian Army have denied the allegation.
    The group had in a statement insisted that General Tukur
    Buratai, chief of army staff, should be included in the ongoing probe of abuse
    of funds meant for the procurement of arms for the military by the EFCC, wondering why Buratai, who was the director of procurement under Air Chief Marshal Alex Badeh (former CDS), was excluded from the list of officers announced.
    “Lt. General Tukur Buratai was appointed director of procurement DHQ in
    2012, a position he held until May 2015 that he was appointed Force
    Commander of the Multinational Joint Task Force (MJTNF), an appointment he
    held till he became chief of army staff,” Steven Chilaka, national
    secretary of the movement” the group said.
    Continuing the group said,“As director of public procurement at the DHQ, all procurements by the
    military between 2012 and May 2015 passed through his office. Our question
    is; how can you probe procurement of arms within this period without the
    involvement of Lt. General Buratai, the man who was the Director of
    “Curiously too, only retired and serving officers of the Nigerian Air
    Force were said to have been indicted.
    “Was the army being excluded from this probe to save Lt. General
    Buratai? Or Could procurements have been made without his involvement
    during the period that he was Director of Procurement?
    “Definitely, it won’t be funny if President Muhammadu Buhari’s fight
    against corruption is also selective against the military as it already
    appears to be against the political class and the president must look into
    this obvious case of selective probe as a matter of urgency.”
    However, the Army in a statement titled ‘Save The Nation Movement; A Group of Blackmailers and Mischief Makers’ said, “The the Nigerian Army has noted with dismay the  attempt to rubbish the hard earned name and reputation of the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Yusuf Buratai and the Nigerian Army by a faceless group that called itself “Save the Nation Movement” (STNM) through orchestrated campaign of calumny in the media.
    “In a release signed by Steven Chilaka, its “National Secretary” on Sunday, they wanted the Chief of Army Staff to be included among those indicted  in the ongoing probe of abuse of funds meant for the procurement of arms simply because he was the Director of Procurement at the Defence Headquarters (DHQ).
    The army statement signed by Colonel Sani Usman noted, “The public will recall our earlier warning of this type of campaign of calumny against the Nigerian Army and the Chief of Army Staff. This has again reared its ugly head again.
    “Unfortunately, the movement could not get their facts right as has always been the case with people with dubious intents. Contrary to their mischief, it should be noted that General Buratai was Director of Procurement at Defence Headquarters from March 2014 to May 2015, not from 2012 to 2015 as they wished to mislead the public.
    “Furthermore, there is the need to educate the ignorant group that, Defence Procurement in Nigeria is decentralised; each Service is responsible for its procurement. It is advisable for the group to look elsewhere if they want to attack the Chief of Army Staff.
    “For the avoidance of doubt, the Chief of Army Staff has never been involved in any questionable act throughout his career as military officer let alone when he was at the DHQ.
    “As a matter of fact, the Chief of Army Staff has always been a reference point in exemplary conduct, probity and integrity. It is on record that he voluntarily declared his assets both as Commander MNJTF and as Chief of Army Staff.   In addition, he has directed all Nigerian Army officers to do so.
    “One wonders what is the faceless group’s motive and why they are in a hurry to rubbish the good name of the Chief Army Staff and the Nigerian Army, when there is a Presidential Panel already working selflessly. Why is the group trying to jump the gun. Let these mischievous elements which Steven Chilaka represents, allow the Panel to discharge its duties dispassionately as it is doing. 
    “It is advisable also that the faceless group should get their facts right and not just merely speculate or disturb us with their wishful thinking. They should further understand that whatever mischievous intentions they have against the Chief of Army Staff and indeed, the Nigerian Army, both would not be deterred, we shall remain focused and never to be distracted.
    “Consequently, the public is please requested to disregard the so called Movement’s evil machinations which would surely fall back on them.”

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