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Army reinstates 3 000 soldiers dismissed over Boko Haram war

03 September 2015, 18:54

Abuja - The Nigerian army said Thursday it had reinstated some 3,000 soldiers who were dismissed for alleged indiscipline in the battle against Boko Haram insurgents in the northeast.

Army spokesman Colonel Sani Usman told reporters in Abuja that a total of 5,000 cases were reviewed, out of which 3,032 soldiers were pardoned and recalled.

"The reinstated soldiers have shown their total readiness to be re-launched into the theatre to combat insurgency and have now commenced re-training exercise," he said.

Usman said the army authorities had upheld the sentences of those "with criminal cases", without explaining the nature of the crimes.

He said a judicial process would however determine the fate of 66 soldiers sentenced to death for mutiny and abandoning the war front.

"The condemned soldiers have already filed for appeal. So it is in the judicial process and it is on," he said.

Also read: Boko Haram attacks northern Yobe State

Nigerian troops based in the northeast have at times defied orders to battle Boko Haram Islamists, citing a lack of adequate weapons and other essential equipment.

Last year, soldiers based in the northeastern city of Maiduguri set up a protest camp after being ordered to deploy to a remote part of the region to fight Boko Haram.

Wives of soldiers launched a separate protest outside a barracks, claiming their husbands were being used as cannon fodder and were being sent to battle insurgents who had vastly superior weapons.

A military court last December sentenced 54 soldiers to death for refusing to deploy and take on Boko Haram in the northeast.

Twelve received the same sentence in September last year for mutiny after shots were fired at their commanding officer.



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