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Army Vows To Effect Buhari’s Directive On Ballot Snatching

The Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General Tukur Buratai,
has decried Tuesday’s statement attributed to the presidential candidate of
Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, and former Vice President, Alhaji Atiku
Abubakar, asking the Nigerian Army to disregard President Muhammadu Buhari’s
directive that they deal ruthlessly with ballot box snatchers in the coming
general elections. 

Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General TY Buratai
and other top Army personnel said Atiku’s statement was most unfortunate given
that he was in the highest level of government in the country before and knows
fully that the Nigerian Army in particular and the military, in general, are
meant to obey the orders of the Commander-In-Chief of the Nigerian Armed Forces
to the latter, stressing they will treat Buhari’s latest order with exception.

He asked the former Vice President not only to
withdraw the statement but to also apologise for attempting to incite the army
against what he termed as “constituted authority” it was meant to fully obey.

Speaking at a meeting he held with the Principal
Staff Officers, General Officers Commanding and Brigade Commanders ahead of the
polls billed to commence this Saturday, Buratai warned politicians and their
supporters against testing the will of the army, insisting that those found to
have violated the law, will be treated in line with President Buhari’s
directive.

Although he did not categorically mention the
former Vice President’s name, his description of his target pointed to the
Peoples Democratic Party presidential candidate.

The army chief disclosed that personnel attached to
retired Army Generals, especially those who have become politicians will be
withdrawn just as he said no political actors will be allowed army escort.

He warned officers against playing partisan roles,
saying those with such feelings had up to Friday, February 22 to resign.

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