By Egufe Yafugborhi
The Nigerian Army at the 6 Division, Port Harcourt, Rivers State has opened a trial for 14 accused persons including a Major, two Captains and 11 soldiers for various offences including murder and kidnapping.
General Officer Commanding 6 Division, Maj Gen Jamil Sarham, said before inaugurating the 7 man Court Martial to try the accused persons yesterday that the development, in line with established law, was to serve justice for the accused, the victims, the state and keep the army disciplined.
Sarham said, “The offences for which the accused are being tried range from murder, attempted murder, kidnapping, desertion, offences in relation to public and services property, disobedience to standing orders and conducts to the prejudice to service discipline, all punishable under the Armed Forces Act CAP A20 Law of the Federation of Nigeria 2004.
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“The establishment of Court Martial is predicated on the fact that the Armed Forces of Nigeria holds its personnel in high esteem hence its resolve to ensure that a thorough investigation must be conducted before any suspect can be put on trial as it is in the instant case.
“Case against each accused was thoroughly investigated to ensure no innocent person is wrongly tried and punished. Also, HQ 6 Div painstakingly selected credible officers having in-depth knowledge of military law and outstanding experience of military duties as members of the Court Martial to ensure fair hearing and justice”.
Brig Gen Bassey Etuk, President of the Court Martial, thanked the Nigerian Army on the confidence reposed in them which he promised, they won’t abuse, declaring, “ We will do justice.