PARDON THE 66 SOLDIERS
PARDON THE 66 SOLDIERS
William Shakespeare was right when he said, "Some rise by sin and some by virtue fall. Some run from brakes of vice and answer none while some are convicted for a fault alone".
66 Nigerian soldiers who had earlier been sentenced to death in December 2014 had their sentences commuted to ten years imprisonment each in December 2015 by the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai. We thank the COAS for showing mercy on them.
12 among the 66 soldiers committed a separate offence. They were accused of making an attempt on the life of their commander. The remaining 54 were those who asked to be properly armed before advancing on the enemy.
Nigerians will recall that Nigerian soldiers were fleeing from Boko Haram insurgents due to lack of adequate weaponry. It was after President Muhammadu Buhari became president that he took steps to provide the necessary equipment for the soldiers. The pendulum has since swung as Nigeria's gallant soldiers have liberated territories hitherto occupied by the terrorists.
The ongoing probe into allegations of diversion of huge funds meant for the purchase of arms for the Nigerian military has opened the eyes of Nigerians. They have seen how many corrupt politicians pocketed the funds thereby causing the death of thousands of civilians and soldiers, the abduction of over 200 Chibok girls and the destruction of the homes and properties of thousands who have now been turned into internally displaced persons (IDPs) in their own country.
The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC), now convinced that there was actually an acute shortage of weaponry among soldiers fighting the insurgents and that some callous and greedy politicians were responsible for the shortage, concluded that meting out any punishment to the convicted soldiers is a miscarriage of justice.
Based on this conclusion, MURIC hereby appeals to the good people of Nigeria to sign a petition requesting President Muhammadu Buhari as the Commander-in-Chief of the Nigerian Armed Forces to compassionately exercise the prerogative of mercy by granting presidential pardon to the aforementioned soldiers.
Greatest Nigerian People! We appeal to all men of conscience to raise their voices in support of these young and gallant soldiers who are being punished for exposing corruption and for being whistleblowers against those who pocket blood money. We need just 1,000 (one thousand) signatures. Please send this appeal to all your contacts. It is a humanitarian service. Only noble minds fight for the innocent. Remember the words of Uthman Dan Fodio, "Conscience is a wound, only the truth can heal it."