Court Martial Jails Soldier Over Assault On Minor

Court Martial, Soldier, MinorThe court martial trying offending soldiers of the Operation Lafiya Dole has de-ranked and sentenced an Army personnel to three years in prison over assault on a minor, which led to amputation.

The convict, Umar Sule, a staff sergeant was first arraigned in August 2015 alongside 19 others for various offences.

The two-count charge against him include entertaining an unauthorised person in his guard location as well as unlawful assault causing “grievous bodily harm”.

The 10-year-old boy, simply identified as Mohammed Usman, sat limbless in court on Tuesday as the fate of his assaulter was decided.

Mohammed, as an errand boy to the said soldier, allegedly stole 2,000 Naira from his master’s room.

Giving his ruling, president of the court martial, Brigadier-General Olusegun Adeniyi, said that the court was guided by military laws as enshrined in the Armed Forces Act 2004.

The Defence counsel pleaded for mercy on the grounds that Sergeant Umar was a first offender with clean records.

The victim’s mother, Amina Usman, however, had mixed feelings over the ruling, saying the future of her child hangs in the balance.

On her part, a representative of the National Human Rights Commission, Jummai Mshelia, commended the Nigerian Army and the court martial for the ruling and sought support for the victim.

The judgement is the first since the General Court Martial was inaugurated.

The court has adjourned till October 20 for hearing of the next case.

The 20 soldiers arraigned before the court comprise of four officers and 16 other ranks.

Gas Explosion Kills One, Injures Six In Yobe

Asylum Seeker, GermanyA gas explosion on Wednesday claimed one life injuring six others in Damaturu the Yobe state capital.

Eye witnesses said an Army personnel brought a pipe to be constructed for the hoisting of flags while construction work was going on, the explosive devices went off killing the welder, one army personnel and others close to the welding point.

The witness suspected that explosive devices may have been embedded in the pipe unknowingly to the security personnel by the militant group, Boko Haram.

But the Army Spokesman for the 27th Taskforce Brigade Lieutenant, George Okupe while speaking to newsmen at the scene of the explosion, confirmed the death of the welder as well as the injured Army Personnel who is currently receiving treatment at the Sani Abacha specialist’s hospital in Damaturu the state capital.

He said the cause of the explosion is yet to be known but members of the Explosive Ordinance Devices (EOD) have been deployed to the area to ensure no further explosive devices are still within the area.

The Army Spokesman also said an investigation to ascertain the cause of the explosion has since commenced.

Yobe state is located in the troubled north east geo political zone of the country and has passed through several security challenges over the years, with thousands of people losing their lives in gun battles between security forces and the insurgents while others died through explosive related cases among others.

Since the coming of President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration, the insurgents have been fairly subdued which had led to the restoration of relative peace in the north east states of Adamawa, Borno and Yobe.

Today’s explosion brought a renewed fear in the minds of the residents as the sound of the explosion threw the town into another confusion, with residents trooping to the scene of the explosion as security agents besiege the area to avoid breakdown of law and order.