SSC Candidacy: Army Clears Air On Allegations Of Ethnic Bias


. . .Says strict adherence to Federal Character policy observed

The Nigerian Army has responded to allegations made with regards to those selected for Short Service Commission 47 Selection Board.

The Directorate, in a statement issued today, by the Director of Army Public Relations, Brig-Gen Mohammed Yerima, described the publication by an online newspaper, Global Sentinel via its weblink on 29 March, as ill-informed.

According to Yerima, the publication alleged that the list of successful candidates for Short Service Commission 47 Selection Board, which was published on 26 March, was dominated by the North while the South East had the fewest candidates, and said that “it is pertinent to state that the Nigerian Army strictly complies with the Federal Character policy”.

Accordingly, the statement went on, an equal number of 8 candidates were selected from each state of the federation except in rare instances where a state did not have the required number of eligible candidates to fill its 8 vacancies, in which case, the vacancy will be filled by a contiguous state from the same geopolitical zone.

Explaining further, Yerima said, “Following this number allocated per state, the South East which is made up of 5 States was entitled to 40 candidates. However, 2 extra vacancies were allocated to the geopolitical zone thereby making a total 42 candidates instead of 40. North Central for instance has 7 states, including the Federal Capital Territory, FCT. Taking 8 candidates from each state in geopolitical zone gives a total of 56, and in addition to 2 extra vacancies as was also allocated to the South East, gave the total of 58 candidates”.

The Army therefore views as  uncharitable and blatantly divisive for any media organisation to whip up sentiments from such a straight forward exercise conducted by the Nigerian Army in the best interest of the Nation.

The statement further encourages the general public including media practitioners to always seek clarification from Army Headquarters whenever in doubt on any issue rather than rushing to publish reports that would be “defamatory to the image of the Nigerian Army and injurious to Nigeria’s unity”.

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