By Yusuf Adua
Nigeria’s Chief of Defence Staff, General Lucky Irabor, yesterday met with major-generals, Air vice Marshals, and the rear admirals who are members of the Regular Course 36 and senior to the new Chief of Army Staff, Major General Farouk Yahaya.
The goal of the meeting is a mechanism to professionally ease out no fewer than 70 major generals, AVMs, and rear admirals out of the service.
You would recall that the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), overlooked 29 major-generals and appointed Yahaya as the new COAS who is a member of Regular Course 37, a move which has been spewing up talking point recently.
Irabor subsequently asked members of Course 36 to proceed on courses of their choice and to no longer report at their duty posts. The Thursday meeting was sequel to a letter marked DH/ABJ/401/38/ADM dated June 4, 2021 which was marked ‘restricted’ which News Live Nigeria got a copy of.
Rear Admiral AB Adamu signed the letter on behalf of the CDS.
“Ref A (NOTAL) under the cover of Ref B (NOTAL) approved the commencement of annual leave in respect of Maj Gen JB Olawunmi (N/8795) and 28 others who are members of 36RC in the NA. The snr offrs (senior officers) were to proceed on the annual leave wef 1-30 June. However, I am directed to invite all serving members of 36 RC in the AFN (Maj Gen and equivalent) to a meeting with the CDS as follows. Thursday, June 10, 21; DHQ Conference Hall; 11.00hrs prompt.” the letter reads.
Our correspondent gathered that Irabor, consequent upon approval from the Federal Ministry of Defence, asked all the members of regular course 36 across the three services to proceed on courses of their choice for the next 12 months.
An army general, who intimated News Live Nigeria about the happenings at the meeting on the condition of anonymity, said, “Gen Irabor made it clear to everyone that because all course 36 members of the army who are seniors of the current Chief of Army Staff, are being fizzled out, it would be wrong to retain their course mates in other services.
“To this end, all air vice marshals in the air force and all rear admirals in the navy that are members of Course 36 have been affected. They will not be allowed to continue to report at their respective services or DHQ. The intention is to get all to resign without forcing them to do so.”
The source furthered that some of the generals would go to the National Institute of Policy and Strategic Studies while others would go to the Administrative Staff College of Nigeria on course.
On why the military was taking the action, the general proceeded that, “The military now has a tradition whereby when a new chief of any of the branches is appointed, all his seniors, including those who are in other arms of the military, are fizzled out.
It is understood that this was how members of the Regular Course 35 were all fizzled out in February.
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