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Army denies alleged plans to topple Buhari

By Tonye Bakare
23 June 2016   |   11:08 am
The Nigeria Army Thursday said none of its men or officers was planning to topple the government of President Muhammadu Buhari.
Buhari on arrival from London

President Muhammadu Buhari inspecting military guards of honour on arrival at Abuja from London on June 19, 2016. PHOTO: PHILIP OJISUA

The Nigeria Army Thursday said none of its men or officers was planning to topple the government of President Muhammadu Buhari.

“This is baseless and most unfortunate allegation that existed in the warped minds of the originators of such weighty allegation,” said the acting director of Army Public Relations, Colonel Sani Usman. “The Nigerian Army wish to state that this is not true and hereby distanced itself from this weighty allegation.”

The Joint Niger Delta Liberation Force, NDLF, a group of Niger delta militants had alleged, in a statement, that some  army officers have contacted militants on plans to overthrow the government.

But Usman said the army has thrived better in democracy, saying it “is the greatest beneficiary of democracy and therefore cannot ever contemplate any anti-democratic misadventure, certainly not under the command of the present Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Tukur Buratai.”

“We wish to state further that the NA is the greatest beneficiary of democracy and therefore cannot ever contemplate any anti-democratic misadventure, certainly not under the command of the present Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Yusufu Buratai. Rather, we see this type of dangerous speculation as a declaration of war to destabilise the present government by these unscrupulous elements.”

While reiterating the Army’s loyalty to and support for the President, the army spokesman said the Nigerian Army was investigating those behind the ‘dangerous insinuation’ in order to unravel the real motive behind it.

“We would like to reiterate our unalloyed loyalty to the President and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and defence of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. We would also like to reaffirm our unconditional support and obedience to civil authority,” Usman said.