The Nigerian Army General Court Martial sitting in Maiduguri, Borno State has sentenced a soldier serving in Operation LAFIYA DOLE to death for murder.
Other soldiers also bagged jail sentences for various offences ranging from manslaughter to illegal possession of fire arms and ammunitions.
The soldier sentenced to death, Lance Corporal John Godwin, had been charged with murder, which is punishable under Section 106 (a) of Armed Forces Acts (Cap A20), Laws of the Federation of Nigeria (LFN) 2004, for killing five rescued civilians in Yamteke town of Borno State.
Evidence before the military court explained that the civilians were earlier rescued by troops of the soldier’s battalion and were taken for investigation at the time the soldier shot and killed 5 of them.
Another soldier, Sergeant Innocent Ototo bagged life imprisonment for manslaughter having been found guilty of torturing and killing a 13 year old boy who he said stole his phone.
The incident happened at Zamanbari area of Maiduguri metropolis in Borno State.
Lance Corporal Benjamin Osage and Private Sunday Onwe were also got sentenced to 20 years imprisonment each for offences bordering on manslaughter and illegal possession of fire arms and ammunition.
Delivering judgement, the President of the Court Martial, Brigadier General Gbenga Olusegun Adesina, declared that the offences run contrary to Nigerian Army’s Rules of Engagement (ROE) and also against Nigerian Laws and Geneva Conventions which Nigeria is signatory to and which the Nigerian Army as a professional Army holds in high esteem.
All the soldiers’ sentences are however subject to confirmation by the Chief of Army Staff, while those of officers are subject to confirmation by the Army Council.