- Femi Falana has said he wants soldiers to stop wearing uniform outside the barracks
- The senior lawyer said such move would help check criminal activities
- According to him, some soldiers provide cover for criminals and help them to beat security checks while on uniform
Human rights lawyer and senior advocate of Nigeria, Femi Falana, has called for an end to the wearing of military uniforms by personnel outside the barracks, Punch reports.
Falana said the soldiers should be stopped from wearing their uniforms in order to check criminal activities being perpetrated across Nigeria.
Speaking in Lagos while delivering the 19th Mike Okonkwo Annual Lecture, Falana said some soldiers while wearing uniform outside the barracks, provide cover for criminals and help them to beat security checks.
Citing the case of the popular billionaire kidnapper Chukwudumeme Onwuamadike, known as Evans, the senior lawyer recalled he (Evans) had a soldier escort in his gang.
Falana said: “We must stop the wearing of uniform by any soldier in town. That boy, Evans, any time he had kidnapped in any part of the city, a soldier, a corporal, will be with the driver in the front and anytime they got to a checkpoint, esprit de corps, they would salute the criminal.
The corporal, after investigation, they found N96.5 million in his account. But if we make it impossible for soldiers to be in uniform outside the barracks, we can stop some of the criminalities going on in our country."
He further urged President Muhammadu Buhari to allow the courts to determine what amounted to threat to national security.
“The problem of the rule of law in Nigeria is a problem of Nigerian lawyers. You know why? In 1988, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation now, Boss Mustapha, was the chairman of the Yola branch of the Nigerian Bar Association.
"A single court order was disobeyed by the (Ibrahim) Babangida junta, Boss Mustapha brought that report to the NBA meeting and Alao Aka-Bashorun was then the NBA President; and he said no, the court order must be obeyed.
"And the entirety of the Nigerian lawyers went on a boycott of courts to enforce a single court order. Today, many court orders are being disobeyed and the Nigerian Bar Association is not bothered and that is why we are in this trouble," he added.
Meanwhile, NAIJ.com previously reported that Falana had written to the acting- director of Department of State Services (DSS), Mattew Seiyefa, demanding the names of the 294 Nigerians who are reportedly held illegally in the detention of the security agency.
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In the letter dated Tuesday, September 11, Falana who thanked the boss of the agency for honouring his earlier request to free people who were in the detention of the agency for over two years without trial, tabled his demand under the freedom of information act.
He also threatened to take a legal action against the agency if his demand is not looked into.
Families of detained suspects in DSS custody NAIJ.com TV