We Dont Have Buhari's Credentials- Nigeria Army (Official Statement)

By 09:24 Wed, 21 Jan 2015 Comments


The Nigerian Army has in an official

statement said they are not in possession of

the original or copies of the credentials of the

presidential candidate of the APC, Maj. Gen.

Muhammadu Buhari. The Director, Army

Public Relations, Brig, Gen O. Laleye said this

when he addressed news men at a press

conference in Abuja today Jan. 20th.

Gentlemen of the Press, I am pleased

to welcome everyone back from the

Christmas and the 2015 New Year

festivities. On behalf of the Chief of

Army Staff, officers and soldiers of the

Nigerian Army, I wish you all a happy

and more fulfilling 2015. Since our last

media briefing on 31 December, 2014,

some issues relating to the Nigerian

Army have occurred and this briefing is

holding specifically to address them.

I will begin with the Major General

Muhammadu Buhari certificate

controversy.

Gentlemen, let me state clearly that the

Nigerian Army holds the retired senior

officer in

very high esteem and respect and

would not be a party to any controversy

surrounding his eligibility for any

political office. Suffice to state that

Major General Buhari rose steadily to

the enviable rank of Major General

before becoming the Head of State of

our dear country in December 1983.

The media hype on retired Major

General Muhammadu Buhari’s

credentials as well as the numerous

requests made by individuals and

corporate bodies to the Nigerian Army

on this issue have necessitated that we

provide the facts as contained in the

retired senior officer’s service record.

Records available indicate that Major

General M Buhari applied to join the

military as a Form Six student of the

Provincial Secondary School, Katsina on

18 Oct 61. His application was duly

endorsed by the Principal of the school,

who also wrote a report on him and

recommended him to be suitable for

military commission. It is a practice in

the NA that before candidates are

shortlisted for commissioning into the

officers’ cadre of the Service, the

Selection Board verifies the original

copies of credentials that are

presented.

However, there is no available record

to show that this process was followed

in the 1960s.

Nevertheless, the entry made on the

NA Form 199A at the point of

documentation after commission as an

officer indicated that the former Head

of State obtained the West African

School Certificate (WASC) in 1961 with

credits in relevant subjects: English

Language, Geography, History, Health

Science, Hausa and a pass in English

Literature. Neither the original copy,

Certified True Copy (CTC) nor

statement of result of Major General M

Buhari's WASC result is in his personal

file.

I hope this explanation will put to rest

the raging controversy surrounding the

secondary school credentials of Major

General Mohammed Buhari as it affects

the Nigerian Army.

I will also seize this opportunity to

make some observations on the recent

CNN report titled 'The Battle Against

Boko Haram', which was aired a few

days ago. I believe we all hold the CNN

in high esteem. However, CNN’s report

on issues concerning kitting,

equipment, medical treatment and

corruption in the Nigerian Army is

perhaps the best example of a media

house’s show of bias, ignorance, poor

journalism, unprofessionalism and

handiwork of a sponsored documentary.

Let me start with kitting. It would

interest you to know that there is no

Army in the world where personnel do

not purchase additional uniforms and

kits to augment those officially issued

to them. Accordingly, the Nigerian

Army without fail issues uniforms and

kits to its personnel periodically.

Like other armies, the NA has over the

years, established ordnance shops in all

its barracks and cantonments where

uniforms and kits are sold at subsidized

prices to its personnel from allowances

already provided in their pay slips.

Similarly, you will agree with me that

the NA has a very functional health care

delivery system in the country. There is

no barrack or cantonment that does not

have at least one Medical Inspection

Room, Medical Reception Station or

Medical Hospital.

The NA fully subscribes to the National

Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) and

this is functional in all its health

facilities. Specifically, personnel in the

North East have the best medical

treatment in that the various health

facilities in all the barracks and

cantonments are well equipped.

Notwithstanding this, personnel with

extensive injuries are evacuated to the

44 Nigerian Army Reference Hospital

Kaduna (44 NARHK), while others are

promptly flown abroad for medical

treatment. Therefore, issue of a soldier

of the NA paying for treatment and

drugs covered by the NHIS is absurd.

The Nigerian Army’s undoubted

operational gains in the North East of

recent, have rubbished the claim of

Boko Haram out-gunning the NA.

The CNN would do well to beam its

searchlight on the atrocities of Boko

Haram terrorists against innocent and

defenseless Nigerians rather than the

NA. Equally, the NA in the past had

requested severally that any evidence

of corruption in the NA should be

reported to the appropriate authority.

Till date, no such evidence has been

forwarded but rather all we see and

hear are sweeping statement of the

purported corruption in the NA. In the

case of Nick Robertson, his leading

questions and introduction of the word

‘corruption’ to the unknown person

purported to be a soldier of the NA was

most unprofessional and merely

justifies a paid exercise. The CNN in the

past have interviewed authorised

personnel of other countries’ armies

and not unauthorized hooded criminals

to speak to the media.

The CNN knows very well how to

contact the relevant offices to clarify

issues concerning the NA but chooses

rather to conduct a clandestine

interview in a kiosk with a faceless

person and a masked individual who

obviously know nothing about the NA.

Finally, the Nigerian Army wishes to

state that it will remain focused on its

mission to rid Nigeria of terrorism and

insurgency.

To that end, it has commenced the

implementation of the extensive

operational, administrative and

logistical decisions reached during 2014

COAS Annual Conference. In no distant

future, law abiding Nigerians will begin

to see very positive results in terms of

security, particularly in the North East

and our dear nation generally.

Before I depart, I once again seize this

opportunity to reiterate the NA’s

unalloyed loyalty and subordination to

civil authority as presided over by His

Excellency, President and Commander –

in – Chief of the Armed Forces of the

Federal Republic of Nigeria, Dr Goodluck

Ebele Jonathan GCFR.

The Nigerian Army also wishes to

emphasize its adherence to the

principles and respect of human rights

in the discharge of its constitutional

duties. It further calls on everyone to

remain vigilant and report any

suspected breach of the peace to

security agencies.

Thank you and God Bless.


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