Sunday, May 10, 2015

Nigerian Army capability and military justice

Femi Falana, SAN
Today's Washington Post has this article about the disciplinary and effectiveness issues facing the Nigerian Army. Excerpt:
The army doesn’t have a history of desertions. But as the military has escalated its fight against Boko Haram, the reported cases of mutiny have appeared to surge. 
In the most prominent case, 54 soldiers from the 111th Special Forces Battalion were sentenced to death for mutiny after they refused to join an operation against the insurgents in August. A month earlier, the same unit had been ambushed, leaving 26 troops dead and 83 others injured. The soldiers then demanded better munitions to fight the rebels, who were armed with anti-aircraft guns and armored personnel carriers, said a court filing from [defense attorney Femi] Falana. Ironically, most of the rebels’ weapons appeared to come from Ni­ger­ian military bases they had overrun, according to the surviving troops. 
The Special Forces unit had only 174 fighters in August, its commander said in court, rather than the approximately 750 soldiers that battalions are expected to have.

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