NSA raises panel to probe arms deal under Yar’Adua, Jonathan
PRESIDENT Muhammadu Buhari has ordered a full-scale investigation into the procurement of hardware and ammunition in the Armed Forces between 2007 to date. He directed the National Security Adviser (NSA), Maj.-Gen. Mohammed Babagana Monguno (rtd), to constitute a panel to look into the purchase.
In compliance with the directive, the NSA has named a 13-member panel to probe the purchases. They include Air Vice Marshal J.O. N. Ode as President with Brig.-Gen. Y. I. Shalangwa as Secretary. Other members of the panel include Rear Admiral J. A. Aikhomu (rtd), Rear Admiral E. Ohor (rtd); Brig.-Gen. L. Adelakun (rtd) and Brig.-Gen. M. Aminu Kano (rtd) as members.
Also on the panel are Brig.-Gen. N. Rimtip (rtd); Commodore T. D. Ikoli, Air Commodore. U. Mohammed (rtd); Commodore I. Shafi’I, Col. A. A. Ariyibi, Group Capt. C. A. Oriaku (rtd) and Mr. I. Magu of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) as members.
The investigative committee’s mandate, according to a statement from the Presidential Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, is to identify irregularities and make recommendations for streamlining the procurement process in the Armed Forces.
The statement said the constitution of the probe panel was in response to the myriad of challenges that the Nigerian Armed Forces have faced in the course of ongoing counter-insurgency operations in the North-East, including the apparent deficit in military platforms with its attendant negative effects of troops’ morale.
“The committee will specifically investigate allegations of non-adherence to correct equipment procurement procedures and the exclusion of relevant logistics branches from arms procurement under past administrations, which very often resulted in the acquisition of sub-standard and unserviceable equipment,” the statement said.