Reps Probe Refusal of Nigerian Military to Re-instate illegally Dismissed Army Officers
The House of Representatives on Public Petitions has began the probe on the alleged refusal of the Nigerian military to re-instate Colonel Danladi Hassan, others who were compulsorily retired.
It could be recalled that, Hassan and the 37 other officers were forced to retire from the army in June 2016.
The officers affected include Nine Major Generals, 11 Brigadier Generals, Seven colonels and 11 Lieutenant Colonels.
The National Industrial Court sitting in Abuja had in 2019 ordered the Nigerian Army authorities to reinstate Colonel Danladi Hassan.
In his judgment on the suit filed by Hassan, Justice Sanusi Kado, declared the letter by the army on the retirement of Hassan as null and void.
He ruled that, the officer be accorded all his rights and privileges accordingly.
However four years later, the Nigerian Army had allegedly failed to comply with the Court ruling.
This prompted Hassan and three other retired officers; Colonel Mohammed Suleiman, Colonel Chidi Ukoha and Lieutenant Colonel Abdulfatai Mohammed, to petition to the House of Representatives against the Nigerian Army, seeking the lawmakers help to compel the Military to comply with the Court’s judgement.
Chairman, House Committee on Public Petitions, Jerry Alagbaoso wrote to the Nigerian Army in a letter dated, 23rd September, 2022 and addressed to the Chief of Army Staff, demanding appearance and their brief on the matter.
The letter reads in parts, “Whereas the above named petition is now pending before this Committee and the particulars of the petition aforesaid are already within your knowledge, And whereas, the petition has been assigned to be heard by the Committee for determination.
“YOU ARE HEREBY required to note Sections 88 and 89 (C) of our constitution (as amended) and appear in person before this Committee on Wednesday 5th day of October 2022 at 2:00pm or so soon thereafter as the Committee shall direct: Please bear in mind the NCDC Protocols. You are to Submit one (1) soft and ten (10) hard copies of your brief on the matter. AND FURTHER TAKE NOTICE that if you do not attend the hearing as required, the case may be heard or determined in your absence.”
At the hearing on Wednesday, Colonel Hassan, who was accompanied by the three other retired officers and his Counsel Samuel Zibiri (SAN), reminded the lawmakers his reason for writing the petition.
“The Court asked them to reinstate me and I’m not reinstated yet. That’s why I’m here. Here with me is my lawyer and others retired with me,” he said.
While reacting, the representative of the Army, Acting Deputy Director Admin, Lieutenant Colonel Diepriye Bambo noted that, they have seen the petition, advised the retired officers to individually write to army council.
“We have seen his petition, but we saw it very late. It got to us last Friday, but I have gone through it. Incidentally, the senior officers case were cases that occurred immediately after 2015 election. In 2016 about 32 of them were retired. I want to advise, I want them to understand that we appreciate how they’ve taken the law. We have taken cognizance of the fact that they won their case, it’s better they write individually to army council,” he said.
However, Hassan’s Counsel, Zibiri faulted the suggestion. He insisted that, the Court judgement is still valid and the army cannot choose how the retired officers will be reinstated.
“I beg to differ because the judgement of the court is still valid. The army council cannot choose how they will be reinstated or what to do, outside the judgement of the Court,” he said.
In his ruling, the Committee Chairman, Hon. Alagbaoso opined that there is nothing wrong for the retired officers write the army council.
“If they want you to write the army council I think there’s nothing wrong with that. Matter adjourned to Tuesday, October 11,” he said.
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Report By: PRNigeria.com