A court-martial sitting in Maiduguri, Borno State capital yesterday sentenced Trooper Azunna Maduabuchi to death by firing squad for killing the adjutant of his unit, one Lieutenant Babakaka Ngorgi.
Maduabuchi of 212 Battalion was arraigned for murder after shooting Lieutenant Ngorgi in July 2020 at close range in Bama Local Government of Borno State for refusing to grant him a welfare pass.
Four other soldiers were arraigned for manslaughter and sentenced to various years of imprisonment.
They include Sergeant Sani Ishaya, (four years), Lance Corporal Bidemi Fabiyi, (two years), while Private Adamu Abdulrasheed and private Musa Bala got one-year imprisonment each.
Lance Corporal Aja Emmanuel, was demoted to Private for assaulting Rahman Abdalla with his belt in Maiduguri metropolis.
Delivering the judgment at the Maimalari Cantonment, Maiduguri, President of the Court, Brigadier-General Arikpo Ekubi, said: “For the offence of murder, is death; as provided under section 106 of the Armed Forces Act. This sentence is to be carried by firing squad. May God have mercy on your soul”
According to him, the sentences were subject to confirmation by the appropriate Nigerian Military authority as provided under section 151 subsection 1(b) and section 152 Armed Forces Act, 2004.
According to him, the soldiers conducted themselves in an unprofessional manner, which was totally unacceptable to the Army, saying “When you took the laws into your hands by beating the deceased, Peter Okogu in Maiduguri, you committed an offence of assault.”
He said the Army had always and particularly in the last three years focused on the protection of the fundamental human rights of every citizen.
General Ekubi noted that the Army had emphasized human rights in all it engagements, adding that “this was why he said human rights desks, were established across military formation in Nigeria.”